The Tennessee Titans will have to trim their roster from 90 to 53 on August 31. Between now and then, they’ll have two more weeks of practice and two more preseason games.
Now that Training Camp and two preseason games have come to a close, here’s who I see making it past the final cut.
- Marcus Mariota
- Ryan Tannehill
This is undoubtedly the strongest pair of quarterbacks that the Titans have had since Steve McNair was under center and Neil O’Donnell was strolling the sidelines as the backup. Mariota has proven to give the Titans a chance to win any time that he plays. The problem with that? He’s never played a full season.
Enter Tannehill, the Miami Dolphins’ former longtime starter. He won’t become the Titans’ guy barring a total meltdown from Mariota, but he is perhaps the best backup option in the league. If Mariota misses a game due to injury, which history says he will, the Titans won’t miss much of a beat with Tannehill.
Running Back (4)
- Derrick Henry
- Dion Lewis
- David Fluellen
- Jeremy McNichols
I stated before the preseason began on my podcast that if one of the Titans’ tailbacks on the lower end of the depth chart wanted any shot at making the roster, he would need to make a name for himself and separate himself from the pack. Over the last few weeks, McNichols has done just that.
He’s been a good weapon during the preseason and took advantage of his extra opportunities during Henry’s injury absence. McNichols is probably the 52nd guy on the roster (I’ll reveal who’s #53 later), but I currently see him making the cut.
Fluellen, previously a bubble guy, looks to be a lock after he reshaped his body to allow himself to play fullback.
Wide Receiver (6)
- Corey Davis
- Adam Humphries
- A.J. Brown (R)
- Tajaé Sharpe
- Darius Jennings
- Taywan Taylor
The Titans’ group of receivers heading into 2019 is talented both at the top and at the bottom. Davis and Humphries are reliable targets who are both very comfortable with Mariota. Brown should develop into a key piece once he gets some tread on his tires.
Sharpe seems to really be coming into his own following a strong showing during Training Camp. Jennings was the NFL’s best statistical kickoff returner in 2018, and he’s someone that the Titans’ coaches love.
That leaves Taylor, the guy clearly at the bottom of the pecking order with this group. He’s rebounded well from a disastrous preseason opener and has probably done enough to fend off roster hopeful Kalif Raymond.
Tight End (4)
- Delanie Walker
- Jonnu Smith
- Anthony Firkser
- MyCole Pruitt
We know who exactly who the top two guys in this group are. Walker is a nightmare for opponents; he wins in numerous ways and is totally in sync with Mariota. Smith is a good matchup threat who can use his plus athleticism to make plays in good circumstances.
Firkser and Pruitt are a bit more mysterious, but they have both been strong in Training Camp and look to be relative locks to make the cut. Firkser gets open and catches everything. Pruitt has some speed and plays well on the line of scrimmage.
Offensive Tackle (3)
- Jack Conklin
- Dennis Kelly
- Tyler Marz
As Pro Bowler Taylor Lewan serves his four-game suspension, he will not count against the Titans’ roster. That gives them an extra slot for four weeks, and it also means that Tyler Marz will likely be kept around as a reserve option at tackle.
Interior OL (5)
- Rodger Saffold
- Ben Jones
- Kevin Pamphile
- Nate Davis (R)
- Corey Levin
The Titans have a handful of good football players on the interior of the offensive line, and they know it. All throughout camp and the preseason, they have experimented with different combinations at right guard and center.
Rookie Nate Davis’ mystery injury makes this group a little tougher to figure out, but I would be surprised to see it go any way other than this. Jamil Douglas might have an outside shot to make the cut, but my gut says the Titans prefer all five of these guys to him.