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First Training Camp Practice in the Books

Posted Jul 26, 2014

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- More than 2,500 Titans fans surrounded the fields at Saint Thomas Sports Park on Saturday morning as the team held its first official training camp practice of 2014.

Some fans lined up as early as 6:45 a.m. to get a prime spot along the fence to watch the players take the field with hopes of a promising season.

“First day,” stated head coach Ken Whisenhunt. “It was good. I thought we had some energy early in practice which you expect. I think they got a little tired as practice went through but that’s part of it.”

Fans were treated early and often to big plays from the Titans’ receiving core. Kendall Wright caught the first deep ball, which was followed by an acrobatic tip-toe catch by Justin Hunter on the sideline.

“They’re pros, you expect them to make some plays,” Whisenhunt said tempering the excitement of fans and media alike. “I think you balance it. We put the ball on the ground a few times and had a couple things that were not so good. We have a lot of things we get a chance to work on.”

The explosive plays in the passing game continued throughout practice in the team drills. Jake Locker hooked up with veteran receiver Derek Hagan, beating second-year corner Blidi Wreh-Wilson on a double move. Charlie Whitehurst stepped in the very next play and threw a long pass down the right sideline that Nate Washington hauled in.

Many of the skill position players had their shining momenta on Saturday. The practice ended with a long touchdown from Whitehurst to fifth-year receiver Marc Mariani.

Whisenhunt was torn between his excitement for the offense and his frustration with the defense giving up so many big plays.

“Obviously my roots are in offense, so it would be easy for me to say I like the big plays offensively,” said Whisenhunt. “But then I think defensively I don’t like that so I try to not get caught up in it. I think one of the things you look at is mistakes and then the intensity and effort.”

The defense did have its moments, most notably strong safety Bernard Pollard. In one-on-one drills, Pollard jumped Craig Stevens’ route to intercept Locker for what would have been an easy pick-six. During team drills, Pollard picked Locker again patrolling the middle of the field and getting in front of a pass intended for Delanie Walker.

“Did he have two picks today?” Whisenhunt joked of Pollard. “Oh gosh now I’m going to have to have to hear about that all day.”

The position battles are already underway just one practice into the new season, however Whisenhunt has yet to release a depth chart to the public. Not only is it too soon for him to know exactly where players stand, he wants to let the players compete for their spots.

“I was going through it and trying to do it and I kept coming up with this depth chart that had a bunch of slashes through it and a bunch of different names on the first line,” Whisenhunt explained. “I decided it’s just not worth doing that. We’ll let it settle out. I told the players to not pay attention to the depth chart because they’re going to control that and everyone is going to get an opportunity here.”

The Titans return to practice tomorrow afternoon at 3 p.m. from Saint Thomas Sports Park, marking the final practice for the team before putting on full pads on Monday.

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