NASHVILLE – It’s hard to believe, but game week is finally here.
At the end of the week, the Titans will be on a plane, headed to Cleveland for the season opener.
There’s a lot to talk about, so let’s get to it in this Tuesday’s Titans mailbag.
Judy Christensen from Jackson, Tennessee
Question: Jim, is it true that even though we have Logan Woodside signed to the practice squad, he still could be signed by another team? Is there a time limit or at any time during the whole season? I would hate to see him go anywhere. Thank you.
Jim: Hi Judy. Technically, yes. But keep in mind the Titans would also have a chance to keep him. Here’s how it works: If another team wanted to sign Logan off of Tennessee’s practice squad and to their active roster, the Titans would be notified. Then, the Titans would be faced with a decision: Either sign him to their own active roster or let him go. There have also been situations when teams – including the Titans – have retained a player by paying him a full salary (even while he’s on the practice squad) to keep him from leaving. I get the sense Logan likes it here and feels it’s a good place for him moving forward.
Michael Mashburn from Lawrenceburg, Tennessee
Question: Hi Jim. I was wondering what you thought about the Taywan Taylor move. I’ve liked him as a player for a while but his drops always seem to be the game changers that could of won some games, after watching Kalif Raymond I had wondered if he would take his place as a faster, newer more dependable catcher. What’s your thoughts? Thanks and God bless.
Jim: Hey Michael. I can’t lie – I’ll miss Taywan. He’s a really likeable guy who is easy to pull for. But I trust the decision-makers, and can understand why the decision was made. I wish Taywan well. As for Kalif, man, give the guy credit. He busted it in camp and earned his spot. And he’ll bring speed to the position himself.
Marge Barrows from Paris, Tennessee
Question: Looking forward to the Cleveland /Titans family rivalry game. The last time, going into overtime with no scores was surely a nail biter, thankfully, we were able to put the dawgs back in the dog house! As two bluebirds sitting in the dawg pound, the abuse can be brutal, lol. Question, will there be a Titan fan experience in Cleveland?
Jim: Hey Marge. As far as I know, nothing official as far as a team event, aside from sponsored trips. I’d keep a heads-up for Titans tailgates. I’m sure they’d invite you to the party!
Matt Briggs from Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania
Question: Is Dion Lewis a reliable back-up for Henry this season?
Jim: If you ask me, which you did, yes. And I think you’re going to see him very involved once again.
Chuck Baze from San Antonio, Texas
Question: Hi Jim. Been a fan since the Luv Ya Blue days and looking forward to the season. The schedule this year looks tough but I take heart in knowing the Titans seem to play their best ball against great teams. From all I've read, opinions on Marcus Mariota have been mixed. Folks either love him or hate him. Wanted to get your opinion on what the coaches and front office think about him. I know he has to stay healthy (obviously) but are they leaning one way or another out of the gate? Over the years, seems to me Mariota is on the money when he has time to throw, with a lot of incompletions dropped passes. The national media paints a 'playoffs or bust' picture, just wanted to get a feel for how the team actually feels about him. Thanks much and look forward to reading as always!
Jim: Hey Chuck. I can’t speak for everyone in the organization. The opinions in here are strictly my own. My take: Everyone believes in him and wants him to do well. But Marcus is going to have to prove himself moving forward. He’s going to have to prove he can stay healthy, and he’s going to have to prove he can take his game to greater heights. I personally think he has a great chance to do it. His supporting cast is as good as it’s ever been, and he's comfortable with OC Arthur Smith. But he has to go out and do it.
Jacob Dorian from Ewa Beach, Hawaii
Question: Aloha Jim. I know Jamil Douglas has been mixing it up with the first and second team and getting in his share of reps. Where do you see him contributing to the O-line and how is he doing during practices?
Jim: Hey Jacob. At the start of the offseason, I don’t think I would have told you Jamil would be on the 53-man roster at this point. But he was solid during OTAs and training camp and he earned his spot. I expect he’ll be a back-up at both center and guard. And if someone goes down he’ll be the next man up.
Ryan Gilpatrick from Indianapolis, Indiana
Question: Hi Jim, I was stunned when I learned that Corey Levin was cut by the team on Saturday. I had heard rumors and heresay that he would be starting at center, and bumping Ben Jones to guard. While that never really got past the idea stage, it was still shocking to me that he hadn't made the team. Is there something behind the scenes that we don't know about, or do Coach Vrabel and J-Rob really think he wasn't good enough to play for us?
Jim: Hey Ryan. That was probably my biggest surprise of all the cuts. Titans HC Mike Vrabel didn’t go into any details when asked about why on Monday, he only wished him well in Denver. I mentioned Jamil just above and he’s the guy who really took his spot.
Landon Good from Whitehouse, Ohio
Question: Hey Jim, long time reader, first time writer. I wanted to discuss the elephant in the room, which is MM8. It seems to me, the Titans faithful keep supporting him, and think we have a chance to compete for a Super Bowl with him under center. If you look at the last 10 super bowls, 8 of them have had top tier QBs. The 2 that have won, had a historical defense (Broncos) and a QB who ascended to a whole other level in that specific playoff run (Joe Flacco/Ravens). Can we make the playoffs? Sure. But how can we as Titans fans, sit back and expect to make a run with MM8 under center? He is injured every year, can't throw a deep ball, has never thrown for 3500 yards, etc. This is an era of the passing QB, and we continue to think MM8 can be the guy because of the "intangibles". I doubt this will be published because of the brute honesty. Thank you for your time!
Jim: Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Landon. Not afraid to publish. You kept it clean and are entitled to your opinion.
Bertie Robertson from Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Question: Hey Jim. Marcus has been through a lot of changes in his time here...there has been NO stability with the coaching staff and players. I personally think Amy and Jon made the right decision with Coach V and he has in turn made good decisions...one being not bringing in a new OC. Everybody wants to compare this team especially Marcus with McNair, Brady, and others who have had constants in their coaching staffs and have not been the greats they turned out to be in their first 5 years...Marcus will, in my opinion, be a GREAT quarterback. Thanks for my vent, Jim
Jim: And thanks for weighing in on the other side of this debate, Bertie. This back-and-forth has been going on all offseason from fans in here. In time, Marcus will prove some folks right, and others wrong.
Have a great week everyone!