Time has flown in training camp this year and it's well past the midway point. It also provides a good time to look at the roster and who stands where in the pecking order.
I recall the beginning of the 2006 season. The New York Jets, under rookie head coach Eric Mangini, were the opponent for the season opener. A week before the game, the Jets' website had a depth chart which featured a 4-3 defense, even though everybody knew they were going to play a 3-4.
Now I'm not suggesting the Titans are trying to deceive anyone with the depth chart on their website, but if the truth was known, much of it bears little resemblance to reality. The starters are fine but not so for the backups. I now see Donnie Nickey on there as the backup holder but I've never seen him do it in practice. All of the reserve o-linemen are miscast. For example, Troy Kropog is listed as the third RT but is actually the #2 LT. Similar discrepancies exist on defense. Go figure.
After watching every practice but one this camp, I've formed the following depth chart from my observations. If you've been a regular at camp, I'm sure you'll agree this is an accurate representation of reality. If you haven't had a chance to make it very often to judge for yourself, then all I can say is that this is how it really stands after nearly three weeks of camp.
QB - Collins, Young, Ramsey
RB - Johnson, White, Ringer, Ganther
FB - Hall
WR - Gage, Washington, Britt
TE - Scaife, Crumpler, Cook, Stevens
LT - Roos, Kropog
LG - Amano, Durand
C - Harris, Velasco
RG - Scott, Murphy
RT - Stewart, Otto
LDE - Kearse, Hayes, Ford
LDT - Haye, Jones
RDT - Brown, Vickerson
RDE - Vanden Bosch, Ball
SLB - Thornton, McRath, Stamer
MLB - Tulloch, Fowler, Boiman
WLB - Bulluck, Keglar, Allred
LCB - Harper, Williams, McCourty
RCB - Finnegan, Faggins
SS - Hope, Nickey
FS - Griffin, Harris
NB - Fuller, Mouton
K - Bironas
P - Hentrich
LS - Amato
KR - McCourty, Ringer
PR - Mouton, Davis/Britt
Kevin Mawae is on the PUP list and not included above. When he's removed from PUP, that bumps Velasco from the #2 spot at center.
I deliberately only went three deep at the WR position. I have no interest in forming an opinion beyond that, as it would be a rather unpleasant experience. As stated previously on Total Titans, I can only hope that any additional receivers who make the roster will contribute on special teams.
From what I've seen, Kevin Vickerson has outperformed second-round draft pick Sen'Derrick Marks, who does not appear on my two-deep at DT. However, if the Titans have to make a choice between the two, we all know how that one will turn out. It reminds me of Blakley and Troupe in 2004.
Other than Mawae, Marks and another WR or two, I don't see anyone else on the current roster making the final 53-man roster besides those players listed on my depth chart. Barring injury, of course.
I've included 58 players so not all of them will make it. Several of the o-linemen won't survive the final cut. I see only one guy from the Durand/Velasco/Murphy interior line group staying. The Titans certainly won't keep all nine LBs on my depth chart.
Following are a few notable names who aren't mentioned above.
RB Chris Henry, a second-round draft pick just two years ago. He's trying to improve his stock by playing special teams but he's not as good on teams as Ganther is and can't back up Hall at FB either.
Veteran WRs Paul Williams and Lavelle Hawkins. They've each had chances to prove themselves and time has just about run out on them.
PR/KR/WR Mark Jones, the free agent acquisition, who Drexel just wrote about.
Dominique Edison, the rookie sixth-round WR draft pick.
Safety Nick Schommer, the Titans' final draft pick this year. You can't make the club from the tub and Schommer has spent too much time being an observer and not enough as a participant on the practice field.
RB Rafael Little, who probably would have been drafted a year ago if not for a knee injury. He was a good story but the best he can hope for is the practice squad, which is a little unlikely with four RBs plus Hall on the 53-man.
What's your opinion on the Titans' depth chart as I see it? What's different as you see it?