IMG 3540NASHVILLE, Tenn. – When the Titans kick off three days of minicamp Tuesday before shutting down until training camp, they are likely to operate with a caution that has crept into a lot of operations around the NFL.

In OTAs, Mike Vrabel scaled back some of the team periods, sacrificing some 11-on-11 time and using those periods for more seven-on-seven passing periods (no linemen) while the guys in the trenches worked on their own with their position coaches.

That will continue in minicamp, which could well be chopped to two days.

There will be an overall emphasis on third down and not much if any run game work, as it means little give all that context. It’s better saved for training camp when there will be thudding in pads. [Unlocked]

“We’re a long way away from playing games and we have to install plays and we have to run them,” Vrabel said. “And I think we have to have a balance. You preach finish and competitiveness and the more you preach it, you get what you ask for, you get what you emphasize. And the more I start to see guys in the ground and in contact, that’s against the rules, we’re trying to limit the contract and it’s my job as the head coach to limit that.

“But it’s also my job to have them ready and have them playing how we want them to practice and play with finish and effort and competitiveness. So there is a huge fine line and there is a dynamic that guys are trying to make the team, cover the guy, do their job and also I look at them and I’m like ‘Stay up,’ and they’re like ‘Come on coach, and I’m like ‘I know.’

“It sounds ridiculous. That’s just how it goes.”

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