Technically speaking, every position, for every team, is always up for grabs.
And it’s no different in Tennessee Titans training camp this year.
But let’s be honest, we pretty much know who is playing where.
Sure, there are some offensive line battles we have to keep an eye on, but we aren’t wondering who the Titans’ starting quarterback will be in 2018. We aren’t really questioning what the pecking order in the wide receiver rotation will be, either.
ESPN, however, felt the need to list a “biggest position battle” for the Titans in a recent article that covered each team’s biggest perceived position battle.
For the Titans, ESPN listed the “battle” at inside linebacker between rookie Rashaan Evans and veteran free agent addition Will Compton.
Here’s what ESPN said:
Rookie Rashaan Evans was on track to be the starter until landing on the non-football illness list for dehydration issues. He and free agent Will Compton shared reps during OTAs and minicamp, and Compton has established himself as a defensive leader in Evans’ absence. It will be an intense competition once the first-round pick returns to camp.
I think this is a bit of a stretch. There really isn’t a battle between Evans and Compton. It’s pretty clear that Evans is the future of the position and Compton, who signed a one year deal with the Titans this past off-season, was brought in to help mentor Evans.
Compton will also essentially serve as a failsafe at the position for Tennessee.
It wouldn’t be surprising to see Compton get the bulk of the early season work at inside linebacker, with Evans getting more work as the season progresses.
The Titans traded up to take Evans in the first round because they think he can be an elite linebacker. They didn’t sign Compton hoping to get an elite linebacker.
Just because there’s a shared playing time situation doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a position battle.
There’s a plan for Compton and Evans. And while that plan is on a bit of a hiatus because of Evans’ health, it looks like a brilliant way to bring along what could be one of top young linebackers in the NFL.
Featured image via USA Today