Titans Preseason Schedule is Out

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Titans Preseason Schedule is Out

Jim Wyatt of TitansOnline shared this image (above) of the Tennessee Titans 2017 Preseason NFL Schedule.

Since weeks two and three are the home games, this offers a nice setup for traveling fans. If they can get off of work for 8 or 9 days, they can stay in Nashville and catch both games.


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The NFL’s common way of substituting in preseason

Many years ago, star players began to not play in preseason. They get enough reps in practice and training camps. They don’t want to risk getting injured. They don’t want the other teams to have more “tape” on them. There’s a myriad of reasons that coaches may allow star players to sit.

I have never liked the idea of any player sitting unless it’s due to injuries or some personal issue like illness or a death in the family. You’re a player, you play- that’s what you do. It seems to me that this trivializes the whole experience of preseason. The starters only play a quarter of a game. They don’t even play all four quarters. To make that time frame shorter has a whole “oh c’mon” vibe to it.

What I’d like to see

I’d like to see assistant offensive staff calling plays. If offensive line coach Russ Grimm wants to see how his boys grind, let him call a series. If Frisman Jackson wants to see his wide receivers run this route or that route, let him call a series. Let Jason Michael call some different plays for his backup quarterbacks. I would also like to see Marcus Mariota exit the game at the end of the first and then call plays in the second quarter. Let’s see what plays he calls, by how he saw the defense reacting while he was on the field. Many players retire and then take up coaching. It would be interesting to see any veteran call plays or defensive sets for a quarter. I think Offensive Coordinator Terry Robiske and Coach Mike Mularkey could benefit from seeing some alternatives within their system.

Strings

It is common for the first string offense to play against the first string defense. The second string to play against the opposing teams’ second string….and so on.

On occasion, a young player will mix in with the starters to see how they do against the best. This is somewhat rare though. I don’t like this thinking. I would prefer it be more common.

At some point during the regular season, all NFL coaches mutter some variation of the phrase, “we don’t know how he’ll perform against the first string.”

I’d like to see a more proactive approach. If we go back to the prior thinking of letting stars take the game off, there is a clear indication that coaches are not especially concerned with how many reps some of the players get. I’d like to see them use those reps on the impressive undrafted free agent or the intriguing rookie.

Depth of backups

Kalan Reed was a reasonably high rated cornerback that fell through the draft last year. The Titans were fortunate to grab him late. He performed fairly well in preseason against the third and fourth string competition. As the Titans enter this offseason, they only have tape on him taking 14 snaps on defense in 2016. When the offseason began, cornerback was a position many of us stated that the Titans needed to address by adding players. What if Reed is going to have a bright future? What if he is very good and was just nervous on those 14 snaps? What if, if he had time to relax and calm down, he would have shown this ability?

Tyler Marz. Almost on cue, Titans fans say “who?” while reading his name. He is a backup tackle on the Titans. He measures quite poorly in all of the athletic “tests” they do at the combine. On tape though, he did very well in college. He blocked several of the top defensive prospects and more than held his own. Why not put him against first string defensive ends and see how he does?

The backups on an NFL roster will get into games eventually. They might even fill-in for a game or two. It’s the backups of the backups, the third string, that wind up leaving the coaching staff with many questions. I’d like to see some of them sprinkled in with the starters during the preseason.

Lastly, Sissy boys

I’d like to see NFL quarterbacks fall to the ground like sissy boys. Yeah, the old playground phrase. If a defensive player is “this close” to him, then he should just fall right down. The quarterbacks need the reps. They must be in the game to get the reps, but too many quarterbacks get injured every year. Since the injuries almost always happen when they absorb a hit, just tell them all to go down like sissy boys.

VIAfhbrian
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