NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tajae Sharpe was one of the big topics in Titans training camp a year ago. Sharpe was just a rookie then, but he turned heads with his smarts, and play-making ability.
And it earned him a big role on the team in 2016.
These days, Sharpe has been watching others make plays in camp. He’s champing at the bit to return after suffering a foot injury back in June, which has sidelined him ever since.
“It is tough,” Sharpe said. “I miss being out there with my teammates, just grinding through every day with them. That is what hurts the most, having to watch them grind day in and day out. But I have no choice but to be patient.
“I am feeling good, getting better and better every day. I’m just trying to take it a day at a time and trying to be patient. I know when I get out there I am going to go 110 percent, but I have to make sure I am 110 percent healthy first so when I get out there I am going to be ready.”
Sharpe remains on the team’s Physically Unable to Perform list. He was placed on PUP at the start of camp as he continues to recover from June's surgery.
Sharpe said he’s made a lot of progress, and he’s stayed up to speed.
“I started running a little bit recently,” Sharpe said. “I am just trying to take it day by day, and get that more healthy every day. As long as I am making progress I know I am going in the right direction.
“In the meantime I am doing everything the team is doing except for practice. Meetings, weight room, everything else I am all in, I just can’t practice right now. I have to take it a day at a time, and when the trainers and coaches feel I am ready, I’ll be back out there.”
A fifth-round pick from Massachusetts last year, Sharpe made a nice contribution in his rookie season. He played in all 16 games – with 10 starts – and hauled in 41 passes for 522 yards and two touchdowns.
He became one of four rookies in the “Titans era” to tally at least 500 receiving yards.
Sharpe has seen plenty of changes around him in the past year. The team drafted receivers Corey Davis and Taywan Taylor in this past year’s NFL Draft, and signed veteran Eric Decker in free agency. Rishard Matthews, the team’s leading receiver a year ago, is back, along with veteran Harry Douglas.
Sharpe likes the group, and can’t wait to join them. He’s watched recent practices on the sideline with Davis, who is recovering from a hamstring injury.
“We are looking real good,’’ Sharpe said. “I am happy with what I am seeing from the guys. The guys are improving each and every day and it’s great to see. The more weapons we have in our room the better, so guys are doing a great job competing day in and day out. We are making some plays and just growing as a group each and every day. So it’s a good thing to see. Hopefully before too long I’ll be out there.”