Mailbag: Kalif Raymond's holes, right tackle isn't a real battle, numbers at tight end

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Welcome to the first mailbag of camp, on a Titans' off-day after the first day the media got to see.

Hope you've read my observations of that and this will tide you over. until Sunday afternoon.

Let's hit it like Derrick Henry hit this heavy ball.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mike Vrabel blew his stack at least a few times during the first training camp practice the media watched.

He said it was nothing.

“Who seemed unhappy?” he asked. “No, that's football practice. There's some good, there's some bad and we got to eliminate the stuff that gets you beat – interceptions or balls on the ground, quarterback-center exchange.”

(One outsider’s recommendation: Don’t ask out of a play if you’re a young unknown.)

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(Photo: George Walker/Tennessean via pool.)

It was your basic early practice with some very pretty moments – Kalif Raymond winning deep up the right side after winning quickly against Johnathan Joseph -- and some that rated as less so – Malcolm Butler cursed himself repeatedly after reading Ryan Tannehill’s first throw of one-on-ones, slipping inside A.J. Brown’s crossing route and then dropping an interception. (See photo.)

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Assistant coaches outside of the guys slotted in the coordinator talking slots Zoomed with reporters Thursday, so the day before our first view of the Titans on the field a lot of subject matter was covered.

Without talking what I thought were some of the bigger storylines being worked on, I thought I’d offer you snippets from everyone with a bit of what it left me thinking. My Zoom photography was poor as I bounced between two, and at one point three screens, so you will not be quizzed later on what the new guys look like. We will save that for a bit later.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- During the Marcus Mariota era, there was an annual theme for the Titans at quarterback. Once it was widening his base. Heading into his final year it was bulking up.

It’s typical for players to have an offseason premise that a lot of their work points too, and with Mariota each offseason checkpoint featured a media check-in on the topic.

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Heading into Ryan Tannehill’s first year as the Titans’ starter, there really hasn’t been a similar point of emphasis.

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Most meaningful info from Jayon Brown, Adam Humphries, Kamalei Correa

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- From time to time, as we talk to multiple players in a day and I sort out longer-range ideas and quick-turn analysis, I’m going find days where the best course is simply some reaction to best of what I heard in a day.

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Here’s my first stab at that on a day where the press had Zoom calls with Ryan Tannehill (where there was no real new ground), Kamalei Correa, Jayon Brown and Adam Humphries.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Some of the stitching that holds a team together is sewn during offseason work and in the early days of training camp.

This time around, outside of small groups late in OTA/minicamp season, the Titans were separated in the spring and only later this week will they all be in a team meeting together and on the field working in the same phase.TannehillCelebrateFlagsChiefs

Lost time and missed preseason road trips will be a factor in a ton of categories moving forward, and camaraderie is certainly one of them.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The timing and synchronicity expected of an offensive line require a good deal of practice.

When there isn’t enough, we hear excuses around the league for early-season poor play up-front.

And there won't be enough, with no OTAs and no work in preseason games or joint workouts.LewanHands

Mike Vrabel isn’t an excuse-maker that way. Tell him the parameter and he will work within them to do things the best the Titans can.

Last year, his team had a shaky start on the offense line, with Taylor Lewan suspended for the first four games, Rodger Saffold starting slowly and a second-year guy who had floated through four previous stops in Jamil Douglas starting at right guard where a third-round pick was not ready. [Unlocked]

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17286NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Friday was the deadline for Titans’ season-ticket holders to pass on participating in whatever the team is able to put together for the 2020 season.

Once those who stayed in receive a plan from the Titans, they will have an additional opportunity to defer.

It’s not entirely clear how the city will go about deciding how many fans will be allowed in Nissan Stadium for games given concerns about the spread of COVID-19. The NFL has decreed that anyone attending a game must wear a mask.

Indications are the Titans' initial request was for 25 percent capacity. The building accommodates 69,143 for football, so that would be 17,286.

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