CANTON, Ohio – As Jonathan Hutton and I made out way to Cleveland and then here yesterday, we talked about two years of and came to realize we were on the move on the two-year anniversary of the site.

PK.comLogo badge vintage HiRes 1The Midday 180 will visit with Kevin Mawae today as he approaches his enshrinement into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. For the second time in three years we will look to mingle with guys who are already wearing gold jackets and learn more about the game and the people in the game now from the best people to ever play it.

Camp started in 2017 before this site was up and running, and then I wrote for a while before the membership element was up and running. Once it was you guys jumped to show your support for an independent journalist on the team who works to offer second-level analysis, ask the tough questions while maintaining the important relationships and stays away from the predictable story of the day unless commenting on it feels necessary.

Here was the introductory post and here was the first really good post. [Unlocked]

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Still too early to be excited about Titans' wideouts

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Every year at this early stage of training camp, there is some degree of excitement about the Titans’ receivers.

And every year we look back at this time and recall how naïve we were and how unwarranted it was. The franchise has a long history of being insufficient at the position and unable to fix it.Davispodium

And like with the Titans inability to beat the Colts, it’s a lot safer to expect the same and be surprised by a change than to predict this is the time when it’s going to change.

So let’s keep that context in mind as we review where things currently stand among a group that will go a long way toward determining whether the Titans can make a jump from good to great.

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Titans' coaching and administrative staff has grown 74 percent in 10 years

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – There is a new kitchen at the Titans facility, but no one who works in it is listed as a fulltime team employee. Yet. And a fifth member of the public relations staff is soon to come aboard.2009frontoffice

The media guide the Titans put out as training camp got underway includes 177 employees who are not football players. I was struck by the long list on those pages and it prompted me to search out a sense of just how much the franchise has grown.

So, I dug up a 2009 media guide, from when the team still regularly published such a thing rather than sending out a digital version. And I counted up the people who were in the administrative section in there.

There were 102.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn.  -- As we plug back in on the podcast following four days of training camp, I look into Marcus Mariota's command, the blocking tight end role, Dion Lewis without Derrick Henry, Cameron Batson's chances, Rashaan Evans as a central piece of the defense and false accusations facing me and three boxes of donuts.

This free-for-all is free for all.


You can find it on it on Apple PodcastsSticher, Spotify and TuneIn as well as directly through the Vokal website.

Also, feel free to listen on this page by heading below the line. [Unlocked]

You can find the history of this site's podcasts right here.

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Logan Ryan showing off value as a run defender early

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – We make the mistake occasionally, thinking of a nickel corner as a corner, whose job is to cover.

RyanBut Logan Ryan has shown us he’s an effective blitzer, with the fifth-most sacks on the team in 2018 (four). And on the first big run day of training camp on Sunday, we saw his role as a run defender show up prominently.

He burst into the backfield to hit Dion Lewis for a loss and made other plays outside, showing himself to be a big factor in the run defense.

“What they pay me to do, the salary they gave me, is to be a game-changing player,” said Ryan, who wears yellow cleats on the weekend to help his young daughter spot him. “So, I want to make it so the team has to prepare for me, neutralize what I do. I want to make an impact on every game. …

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Tracking Mike Vrabel's movement as he watched Sunday's practice unfold

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mike Vrabel is like the cartoon Tasmanian devil when the Titans are spread out at practice.

He runs to one group, watches for a bit, jumps in to get his hands on one guy with some advice picking up on what the position coach is talking about, steps back, gradually backs out, then spins his head, turning his attention and closing in on the next group to repeat the process.VrabelWalker

             (Mike Vrabel works hand-on with Delanie Walker during Saturday's training camp practice.)

It looked simultaneously exhausting and energizing, and I’m certain knowing the head coach might step into your drill at any moment adds life to the individual practice period, where positions work by themselves. Sunday’s was 15 minutes long and Vrabel made it to inside linebackers, outside linebacker, the defensive line, the offensive line, back to the defensive line and back to the inside backers.

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Jordan 1NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Let's go back to Logan Ryan’s charity event on May 31. The Chow Down raised money for his animal rescue foundation.

There, his friend and teammate from the Titans' defensive backfield, Kenny Vaccaro, bid some serious cash on a Michael Jordan autographed jersey.

Vaccaro told me Saturday he lost the jersey that same night, and I thought it was only fitting that we put out an APB in an effort to help him find it, as unlikely as it seems.

Here, unlocked, he tells the entire, sad story. It's a long shot, but if your friend had a jersey that looked like this one out of nowhere at the start of June, you may be in line to have a good friend in the Titans' secondary if you provide some details.

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Two-fold rationale for day of heavy red-zone work shows off smart approach

 RedZoneNASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mike Vrabel smartly crafted the second practice of training camp to accomplish two things: Give the Titans extensive work in the red zone and limit the sort of long runs that can contribute to early soft tissue injuries.

Tennessee’s offense ranked 23rd in the red zone last season, scoring touchdowns just 53.2 percent of the time it got inside the opponent’s 20-yard line. The defense was second at 44.7 percent.

Vrabel is optimistic things will get better deep in opponent’s territory. He joked that once Ryan Succop is healthy the kicker will only be needed for extra points and kickoffs.

This is the start of my 24th training camp, and I don’t recall seeing a session with so much focus on one area.

It’d be cool to have more of them. The marketing department could sell “Short-Yardage Sunday,” though that would probably tire certain people out too much.

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