NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Corey Davis continues to show out at Tennessee Titans training camp practices.
Mixing starters with reserves in 11-on-11 drills, quarterback Ryan Tannehill was forced to throw the ball away when working in the red zone. The back-up lofted the ball out of reach for defenders but did not account for Davis. The former fifth overall pick skyed between Adoree’ Jackson, Malcolm Butler and Jayon Brown to pull down the football for a one-handed score.
But today’s update is not about Davis. That warrants a separate post.
Each day, we will analyze the biggest takeaway, individual stand-out or topic du jour that came out of practice and what it could mean for the upcoming season. Let’s take a look at David Fluellen’s weight gain…
— Mickey Ryan (@MickeyRyan1045) July 27, 2019
Fluellen, a former undrafted free agent, was signed by Tennessee in 2015 to bolster their running back depth. He re-upped this offseason on a one-year deal for $720K, per spotrac, and has been experimenting at different positions in the backfield this season (full back, H-back).
The goal: to continue to provide value to his team.
“I mean, that’s just part of the versatility and the vision,” said coach Mike Vrabel. “I hope that our players trust that all our coaches and our entire organization is trying to do everything in their individual best interest, but also the teams. Just trying to do everything we can to add value to him and his position. We handed it to (Fluellen) today, we threw it to him. He’s trying to be as versatile as possible.”
FluSZN, as he’s known to the fans, added about 15 lbs in the spring and is listed on the roster at 5-11, 224. Fluellen wears the weight well and says he feels comfortable in camp with his bulkier frame. Carrying the ball only four times for 16 yards in 2018 before suffering a knee injury, Fluellen has been a staple of the Titans special teams units.
“After the season, I caught up with the coaches,” Fluellen said. “They gave me their vision of me going into the season. From that point on, I really focused on my nutrition, my rest, how often I lift weights to put this weight on. We both knew we didn’t want it to be weight where it was fat and I’m slow and sluggish. I wanted it to be good weight and nutrition and lifting weights. I had all offseason, OTAs and minicamps to work with the weight.
“Early on, it was a struggle getting used to it. But now, my body is starting to react to the new weight being put on. My legs are starting to get stronger and carrying the weight for a duration.”
For his efforts, Fluellen earned the “Coach’s Choice” of the offseason awards that were given out upon the teams return to camp. Fluellen will also be picking as a team captain in this Saturday’s intra-squad scrimmage at Nissan Stadium. It will be the Fluellen-DaQuan Jones squad against Team Marcus Mariota-Matt Dickerson.
Vrabel, GM Jon Robinson and this Titans team recognize work ethic above all else and Fluellen is emblematic of it.
“I just think that he’s a versatile back, is what he is,” Vrabel says of Fluellen. “There’s going to be times where he has the ball, there’s going to be times where we’ll throw it to him, there’s going to be times where he’s blocking. Then he’s obviously going to contribute on special teams.”
Vrabel’s definition of Fluellen may seem matter-of-fact but that may be all it takes to garner respect in a locker room…and could be the difference in making this year’s team.