NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Whiffing on a fourth-round pick isn’t an uncommon sin. But missing on him to the point where he isn’t even on the roster for a game is particularly bad.

Dez Fitzpatrick didn’t make the Titans’ initial 53-man roster.

Tennessee Titans fourth-round pick Dez Fitzpatrick did not make the roster.

Tennessee traded up for him in April, selecting him 109th overall after giving Carolina the 126th (fourth round), 166th (fifth round) and 232nd (seventh round) selections.

Mason Kinsey was the other cut of note, but he was less likely to stick at a crowded receiver spot as he seemed a lesser version of the impressive Chester Rogers.

Some notes on the first version of the 53:

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Saturday night’s preseason game at Nissan Stadium produced many of the same game-day issues the venue has experienced for far too long.

Fans complained about long entry lines, poor concession experiences, lousy ingress and egress.Photo of Gate 3 Entrance Line at Nissan Stadium in Nashville, Tennessee

Many came away with one big question: How is this all still such a mess?

I was able to piece together a sense of the core issues of what went wrong at Bears-Titans.

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By BLAKE BEDDINGFIELD, special correspondent

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Sunday morning after the last preseason game, the coaching staff and personnel department was already meeting to review the game tape, but more importantly, begin to cut down the roster.

The head coach and coordinators will make arguments on how many players they need per position. The special team’s coordinator will also have a say who he feels can be core special teams’ players.

Taylor Lewan, Offensive Lineman for the Tennessee Titans

Pool photo courtesy Tennessee Titans

Each coach will rank the players at their position. The pro scouting department will also rank the position groups.

The pro department will also be charged with calling other NFL teams about who is available for trades and also shopping current Titan players that won’t make the 53-man roster but have enough good preseason film to create interest from other teams.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mike Vrabel’s right-hand man oversaw most of the head coach’s job in the Titans’ preseason finale and did just fine, winning when he threw the challenge flag but shepherding a losing effort, 27-24.

John Streicher, known as "Stretch" to everyone on and around the team, was a fun side story to the preseason’s conclusion and the franchise’s one home game that featured no monster developments.

John Streicher, Coordinator of Football Development, Tennessee Titans

© George Walker IV /

Marcus Johnson limped to the locker room with a right leg issue, the two quarterbacks battling to back up Ryan Tannehill each threw a pick, an undrafted running back found the end zone as did one signed on Thursday.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Welcome to the weekend. We’ve got more Covid craziness for the Titans but it’s nothing like last year and the current developments will not come close to touching the regular season.

They’ll wrap the preseason Saturday night at Nissan Stadium against Justin Fields and the Bears and then have two weeks to get ready for the Cardinals.

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Here are the best questions of the week.

Will Craig Last year with a weak secondary, the defense played soft a lot and tried not to get beat deep. Will the new personnel let them get back to aggressive defense this year?

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Ryan Tannehill and Julio Jones timing. Pass rush synchronization. Offensive line cohesion.

These are among the areas where the Titans have not been getting the work they need because of missed time from injuries.

They are now within two practice weeks of their Sept. 12 season opener against Arizona and those matters are still on hold.

Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans

Tannehill is on the Covid-19 reserve list. So is one of those pass rushers, Harold Landry, who needs to get things organized with his edge partner, Bud Dupree, a player not all the way back from his ACL repair. And the full offensive line of Taylor Lewan, Rodger Saffold, Ben Jones, Nate Davis and the to-be-named right tackle – Kendall Lamm, Ty Sambrailo or, possibly, Dillion Radunz – has barely been together, if at all, because of injuries, rehab and rest.

“No,” Mike Vrabel said when I asked if time’s running out on some of these needed developments.

But without timetables for return on key pieces, yes, yes, it’s running out. They will make the most of it, plugging guys in when they are ready. It's not going to be the same as having had a lot of time to synch people up.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Time and time again, as Derrick Henry stands behind the podium, someone takes a crack at a legacy question.

It’s not that reporters think Henry will step out of the moment and suddenly look at his career up to now and consider what’s to come and make a pronouncement about where he thinks he will stand in NFL history.

Derrick Henry runs at Tennessee Titans practice in Nashville.

Pool photo George Walker, The Tennessean

It’s more an attempt to chip away, see if he might offer a bit more than he has about what his place in the game means to him and will mean to him. He talks once a week, but before Monday he had hardly practiced, so there has not been much in terms of current events to discuss.

“I’m sure those guys whose names I’ve been mentioned with probably did the same when they played, focus on right now, focus on how I can be better and focus on this team,” he said. “And that’s my focus every day. It’s having tunnel vision… not worrying about anything outside of anything we have going on here.”

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NASHVILLE, Tenn., -- The fate of two Titans wide receiver draft picks will be determined between now and Aug. 31 at 3 p.m. CT.

The team’s surprising show of depth behind A.J. Brown and Julio Jones is going to make things tough on fourth-rounder Dez Fitzpatrick, for whom the Titans traded up, and sixth-rounder Racey McMath.

Dez Fitzpatrick, Tennessee Titans

Fitzpatrick (pictured) endured major struggles early, took even public criticism from Mike Vrabel and revived himself some with a couple of catches in Tampa, including a 23-yard touchdown.

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