By Karen Christensen // @ksc47
This Saturday, August 12, the Tennessee Titans will face the New York Jets at Met Life Stadium in NJ for the first preseason game.
The team has announced that QB Marcus Mariota will be playing in that game; some have speculated that the Titans would hold MM out of preseason play to protect him and his surgically repaired leg (fractured during last December’s game against the Jacksonville Jaguars). Not playing in the preseason opener though: RB DeMarco Murray and the Titan’s first draft pick WR Corey Davis, both out due to hamstring injuries.
I made it to one open practice at St. Thomas Sports Park and witnessed Davis making a miraculous, very impressive catch. Totally stinks that he got hurt!!! I first watched Corey Davis playing against MTSU (my alma mater) during the Bahamas Bowl two years ago; Davis made play after play for Western Michigan and WM did win the game. Murray has said he will be ready to play for the regular season opener against the Oakland Raiders on September 10 and Davis is “week to week” on whether or not he will be able to play.
Derrick Henry has really stood out during training camp, partly because Murray hasn’t been able to participate and mostly because he is just a great player. He had three touchdowns during one training camp I attended; he just breaks thru lines of players and keeps on trucking. Rookie CB Adoree Jackson is another stand out, he is fast, agile and fun to watch. I’ve had my eyes on rookie RB Khalfani Muhammad during both practices that I attended due to the buzz I’ve read about him being able to break away and possibly take the ball to the end zone. Muhammad is wearing one of my all-time favorite Titan’s numbers, Chris Johnson (CJ2K) so hopefully he will play to honor number 28 by playing well. He is pretty fast, but he did not get to score at the camps I attended.
As of June 2017, the Titans signed a one year deal with WR Eric Decker, who had been released by the Jets after Decker had an injury plagued 2016 season. At first I was not too happy about this, because this means one of the other wide receivers with the Titans is probably not going be on the final 53 and I like Matthews, McBride, Tajae Sharpe and rookie Taywan Taylor, and of course Corey Davis.
There was an incident in Nashville over the summer where Sharpe and former Titan Sebastian Tretola were accused of beating up a man in a bar after the accuser was allegedly threatening Sharpe, after Davis was picked during the draft. No arrests were ever made and the accuser has filed a lawsuit against the two Titans for damages to his face. Tretola was let go from the team after another incident in Arkansas where he was shot in the leg.
I met Tajae Sharpe after open practice on August 1st and he signed my Titans flag for me; he was not scheduled to sign autographs but he did stop and speak with fans as he was leaving the field. He is currently on the PUP list with a stress fracture to his foot. I truly hope he makes the team this year because he is so passionate about football and the Titans.
But back to my original subject: Eric Decker. He is a great wide receiver! He was catching everything thrown his way. And a super nice fella. Competition is rough at WR position this season. His family already had a home in Nashville, his wife is a country singer, Jesse James Decker, and he is a good fit for this team. The Deckers have a reality show called “Jesse and Eric, Game On” on E! network.
Other recent developments with the Titans: DT Jurrell Casey signed a new contract with the team for $60 million. The Titans signed OLB Erik Walden, formerly with the Indianapolis Colts. The Titans have worked to improve their special teams by signing S Brynden Trawick (Raiders), LB Daren Bates (Raiders, LA Rams), and WR (returns) Eric Weems from the Atlanta Falcons. Also added to the team during free agency are S Jonathan Cyprien from the Jags and CB Logan Ryan from the New England Patriots.
Lots of changes, lots of improvements. Coming up next year the uniforms are going to be changed, controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk has stated that it is not going to be a small change…looking forward to some new unis.
In other news, part of the Titans is for sale. This from Amy Adams Strunk:
“Recently Susie (Smith) began the process of selling her portion of KSA Industries, which includes a fractional indirect interest in the Tennessee Titans. We respect her right to make this decision and will cooperate fully with the process, which will not impact team operations in any way.”
“Regardless of the outcome of this process, I will continue to serve as the controlling owner of the Titans. The remaining two-thirds of the team controlled by myself, Kenneth Adams IV, Barclay Adams and Susan Lewis is not and has never been for sale.”
“Both personally and as a group, we have invested time, effort and capital to improve this franchise and we are excited to see the results on and off the field for years to come.”
Per the Tennessean newspaper, the price tag is about $660 million for 1/3 of the Titans. I hope that the other members of the Adams family will purchase the team, Ms. Amy has done such a great job with fixing the facility and hiring a new GM and numerous other improvements. The rumors of Jon Bon Jovi and Peyton Manning and Justin Timberlake buying the team have been hitting the internet hard this week. Please don’t move our team out of state is my main concern. I don’t think I could stand going through what St. Louis, San Diego, and Oakland fans have had to deal with…
I’m hyped for our Titans this year. We have great wide receivers, the best O-line in the NFL, improved special teams and a “rebuilt” quarterback. My heart had some pangs today when I saw that Mariota was wearing a knee brace on his left leg, but he said he has worn that for some time with no problem.
Now my main man, RB DeMarco Murray, needs to get healthy and stay that way and we will be fine. Plus we have our king, Derrick Henry out there so no worries.
And as the new Tennessee Titans promo states, “We will forge ahead”. Super Bowl here we come.
Featured image of Muhammad courtesy: Gary Glenn/Donn Jones photography
Follow and chat Titans with me // @ksc47