ON THE ROSTER: G -
KEY DEPARTURES: T – David Stewart (Released/Retired)
The departure of long-time Titans tackle David Stewart left the only hole to fill following the 2013 season. The Titans signed veteran free agent tackle Michael Oher who spent his first five seasons with the Baltimore Ravens and used its first round draft pick on Michigan tackle Taylor Lewan.
The four returning starters include left tackle Michael Roos, left guard Andy Levitre, center Brian Schwenke, and right guard Chance Warmack. That unit had plenty of success in 2013, ranking ninth in the league in sacks allowed (37) and 16th in QB hits (81). It’s a deep offensive line in 2014 with a balance of youth, veteran leadership and chemistry.KEY FIGURES:
Roos has been a staple at left tackle in Tennessee since being drafted by the Titans in 2005. The former second-round pick has been the definition of durable, missing only one game during his nine seasons in the NFL. In 2008, Roos made the Pro Bowl and was named First-Team All-Pro.
#67 Andy Levitre – LG – 6th NFL Season
The Titans inked Levitre to a multi-year contract in 2013 after he spent his first four years in Buffalo. Levitre was seen as the standout guard in the free agent class and agreed to terms with the Titans on his first day on the open market. Entering his sixth season, Levitre has never missed a start in his NFL career, including all 16 games for the Titans in 2013. The guard is a former second round pick by the Bills in 2009.
Schwenke joined the Titans as a fourth-round pick (107th overall) in the 2013 NFL Draft. The center battled the injury bug to begin his career, but returned to start nine of the team’s final 10 games in 2013.
As a California Golden Bear, Schwenke played his first three seasons at guard before moving to center his senior season. It proved to be a quick and successful adjustment as he was named first-team All-Pac-12 that season. A clean bill of health and a season of NFL experience under Schwenke’s belt are the building blocks for what he hopes to be a standout sophomore campaign.
#70 Chance Warmack – RG – 2nd NFL Season
Warmack was the centerpiece of the Titans’ efforts to rebuild their interior offensive line in 2013. Tennessee used the 10th overall pick to grab the 6-foot 2-inch, 323-pound guard from Alabama. Warmack went through an adjustment period as the Titans moved him to RG from his natural LG position in college. The three-time national champion at Alabama started in all 16 games as a rookie. He has the size and strength, and like Schwenke, a year of experience could lead to a prosperous 2014 season.
With the departure of David Stewart, the team found itself in need of a right tackle for the first time since 2006. Early in free agency the Titans signed veteran Michael Oher, who spent his first five NFL seasons with the Baltimore Ravens playing both tackle positions. The former 23rd overall pick from 2009 hasn’t missed a start as a professional.
Oher owns 10 games of playoff experience as well as a championship ring from the Ravens Super Bowl XLVII win against the San Francisco 49ers. He is the slated starter at right tackle but could potentially be challenged by 2014 first-round pick Taylor Lewan.
PLAYER TO WATCH:
The mammoth 6-foot 7-inch, 309-pounder from the University of Michigan enters training camp ready to compete for a spot in the starting lineup. The Titans selected Lewan with the 11th overall pick in this year’s draft in order to add depth at the position, and gain a key piece to their future.
The team’s immediate plan for Lewan has yet to play out. The tackle could end up seeing time at both left and right tackle when it’s all said and done. With Michael Roos in the final year of his contract, Lewan has the potential to become the franchise’s new cornerstone at left tackle. Head coach Ken Whisenhunt noted during OTA’s that it’s especially hard to judge linemen until they put pads on, but so far he’s liked what he’s seen from his rookie tackle.