Bleacher Report Post-Mortem: Early Projections for Titans’ Final Roster

Read the article (or don’t).

I haven’t posted a Director’s Commentary on the past few articles. There’s an easy explanation. Between April 1 and 20, I wrote three articles. Between April 27 and April 28, I published four articles. I made a late push and finished #2 in April for all Titans’ FCs. To extinguish my ego, I look at the number for just about any other team in the NFL. The top Titan writer got about 10k readers for April and the top Steeler writer got 133k.

Saturday was a busy day, as I got out a Day 2 summary, a quickie article out about the Taylor Thompson pick and a Day 3 summary before I hung up the laptop.

Every week we get a set of assignments. At the bottom are some for a few of the individual teams. One was to do an early final 53-man projection for the team. I decided to do one for the Titans. I thought it would be hard to cut down the roster from its current 90 to 53 players. It really wasn’t that daunting.

Positions that are easy to figure out include QB, RB, FB, OT, LB, and S. The interior offensive line is messy. The team wants another center. A veteran like Jeff Faine may sign. If so, that means Eugene Amano is either the new starting right guard (a position he played prior to getting the nod at center) or on the street. I’m going only with guys on the current roster. Kevin Matthews, son of Bruce, was on the roster every week last year and active for none. Is he really going to develop? Fernando Velasco has been with the team for three years and started three games in 2010 at guard. Ryan Durand was a practice squad guy. Steve Hutchinson’s starting at left guard. Leroy Harris started at LG last year and probably will shift to RG. Cue the horror music. Or will he?

Wide receiver had the problem of so many bodies. 14 players are rostered. It was easy to cull that group down to Britt, Washington, Wright, Williams, Hawkins and Mariani. At tight end, I wondered if the team would keep four guys, including the human penalty machine Daniel Graham. With Taylor Thompson a developmental guy who would be snatched up in a minute if he went to the practice squad, I said yes.

Defensive line wasn’t fun. I’ll take the front office’s word and call Kamerion Wimbley a defensive end. Including rookie Scott Solomon I only have four pure DEs on the roster. Leger Douzable could play both. I left a staggering seven DTs on the roster, including rookie free agent DaJohn Harris. I wanted at least one UDFA to make it.

Cornerback is another position with a lot of bodies. A Titan draft class at the crossroads is the 2009 one. I had Gerald McRath, Ryan Mouton, Sen’Derrick Marks, Troy Kropog and Ryan Durand as members of the class who could be out. Ryan Mouton watched fellow 2009 draftee Jason McCourty pass him on the depth chart as Mouton recovered from an Achilles tear. Mouton wasn’t that good before the injury. I gave him the boot.

A second position that might need a veteran reinforcement is safety. Jordan Babineaux came on in August of last year and is a starter. Michael Griffin’s there and most likely will leave for big bucks in 2013. The only other guy who earned a roster spot in my estimation was 6th-round rookie Markelle Martin.

One position that’s never considered by the average fan but will be critical on game day is long snapper. Ken Amato was the guy for nine years and has not been resigned. In his place will go either Jake Ingram, drafted by the Patriots in 2009 but not a full-time guy in the NFL since the middle of 2010. His competition is UDFA Beau Brinkley of Missouri. Yeah, I have to root for the Missouri guy.

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