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Arden Key On Titans' Defense Versus Vikings: 'We whooped their ass'

Arden Key On Titans' Defense Versus Vikings: 'We whooped their ass'

EAGAN, Minn. – Arden Key is the right guy to summarize the Titans’ defensive work against the Vikings in two days of joint practices.

“We had a good day (Wednesday) but it wasn’t up to our standards,” he said. “The coaches got on our ass a little bit, some of the players got on our ass a little bit. Today, we whooped their ass.”

Tennessee Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill (17) and quarterback Malik Willis (7) chat with Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) after a joint practice in Eagan, Minn., Thursday, Aug. 17, 2023.
  Ryan Tannehill, Kirk Cousins and Malik Willis/ © Andrew Nelles / The Tennessean / USA TODAY NETWORK

High-intensity Tennessee had an excellent defensive showing at the Twin Cities Orthopedics Performance Complex, with some pretty pass defense, a consistently disruptive pass rush and a stout and stingy run defense. [Unlocked]

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Anatomy of the Titans' offense in one-on-ones against the Vikings

Anatomy of the Titans' offense in one-on-ones against the Vikings

EAGAN, Minn. – Ryan Tannehill called it a three-club wind. Will Levis told me it was two clubs.

Either way, there was no disputing the moving air that had the cords on flag poles dinging against them had a bearing on passing during Thursday’s joint practice between the Titans and Vikings.

DeAndre Hopkins
DeAndre Hopkins completes a catch against Mekhi Blackmon

I watched Tannehill and Will Levis throw one-on-one passes against Minnesota defensive backs, and the success rate was low. There is no rush, obviously, and the offense should have an advantage – they know where they are going and the defender is purely reactive with no help.

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Treylon Burks' Injury Could Be A Massive Issue For The Titans

Treylon Burks' Injury Could Be A Massive Issue For The Titans

Treylon BurksUpdate, 5:39 pm CT: Ian Rapoport reports an MRI revealed Trelon Burks suffered an LCL sprain and should only miss a few weeks. 

EAGAN, Minn. – All the hope and good feelings surrounding the Titans took a major dent here Wednesday afternoon when Treylon Burks stretched to pull in a deep pass down the middle from Ryan Tannehill down the middle of a Vikings’ practice field. 

He stumbled after he collected the pass over Akayleb Evans, staggered for four or five strides, went to the ground, rolled over sideways, bounced up, took a step and started limping.

Then: two steps, a stop, a hop, a lean on the nearest teammate, a pause, another step and a bend to put the ball down, bending at his waist again.

Trainers collected him beside a tent that covers a video station and looked hard at his left knee/calf with him on the ground on his back. Initially, they waved off a cart, but only minutes later one came to him and he got up with help.

Ryan Tannehill was one of the people who assisted the receiver's short walk to the cart when he put no weight on the leg. DeAndre Hopkins and Derrick Henry both offered words of encouragement. [Unlocked]

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Mike Herndon: First-Game Film Review Of 2023 Titans' Draft Picks

Mike Herndon: First-Game Film Review Of 2023 Titans' Draft Picks

By MIKE HERNDON, columnist

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Preseason football is here and that means fans and analysts everywhere are rushing to find video evidence to confirm their prior opinions and take premature victory laps on the internet. So we’ll start this column with a reminder that this is just one very small snapshot of a much larger body of work that these players are putting together over the course of training camp.

Aug 12, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Tennessee Titans quarterback Will Levis (8) looks to pass in the second half against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports
Will Levis/ © Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

Allowing 12 snaps from the Titans' starting offensive line to convince you that there won’t be any blocking issues in Tennessee this year is a mistake. I could go back and find 12 snap stretches where the 2022 Titans offensive line looked good as well (and against better competition than a toothless Bears front). Similarly, you shouldn’t be letting Josh Whyle’s two poor moments lead you to believe that he should be cut today.

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While Backups Draw Attention, Ryan Tannehill's Mastery Of Titans' Offense Grows

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – We all know he’s the starter. 

Still, Ryan Tannehill’s been largely set aside as a Titans’ conversation topic.

Ryan Tannehill
  Ryan Tannehill/ Courtesy Tennessee Titans, Donald Page

They’ve got a 2022 third-rounder they traded up for (Malik Willis) competing with a 2023 second-rounder they traded up for (Will Levis) and a quarterback competition – even for the No. 2 job – provides camp intrigue.

A story about the starter having a handle on it isn’t so intriguing, but it should be, and here’s why…

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Scout's Take: Risers And Fallers For The Titans Out Of Preseason Opener

Scout's Take: Risers And Fallers For The Titans Out Of Preseason Opener

By BLAKE BEDDINGFIELD, special correspondent

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Going into the first preseason game the coaches and front office want to see how the players in camp will perform in game situations. Also, how the draft choices, free agent signings and the “camp surprises” will carry over what they are doing in practice to a live game situation.

Aug 12, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Tennessee Titans quarterback Malik Willis (7) passes in the second half against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports
Malik WIllis/ © Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

My first thought is the first-round pick Peter Skoronski is going to be a very good player for a long time. I also really like Tyjae Spears for this team.  

My other biggest takeaway is this team has no depth and it is a major concern.  

Best things I saw

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Thoughts On Titans-Bears Start With The Starting Offensive Line

The Titans' No. 1 concern is their offensive line, and for 12 plays over 7 minutes and 15 second that covered 75 yards the group as currently constructed was efficient and effective in the team’s preseason opener in Chicago.

The team will take away all sorts of important information from the 23-17 loss at Soldier Field, but a confidence boost for Andre Dillard, Peter Skoronski, Aaron Brewer, Daniel Brunskill and Chris Hubbard may be the most significant.

Titans-Bears

Acting head coach Terrell Williams said he didn’t pay any attention to who was not playing for the Bears, who’s starting defensive lineup was without four starters: end DeMarcus Walker and Yannick Ngakoue, linebacker Tremain Edmunds and safety Jaquan Brisker. [Unlocked]

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PK TV: Before Preseason Opener, All The Titans' Talk You Desire

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- You can't get enough. This I know about you.

You're never really Titaned out.

And with the team flying out to Chicago Friday and kicking off against the Bears Saturday at noon in the first version of any action since its disastrous Jan. 8 loss at Jacksonville, I knew there was a lot on your mind.

Who will play? Who should play? Will the promise of camp translate to the season? Does early good health mean things are solved? Can the new pieces play to projections?

We got into a lot of that and a lot more Friday afternoon and you are cordially invited to rewatch on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, which is embedded below.

The site is 25 percent off right now. These conversations, which come during the week and then from the press box postgame, are usually members only. So come sign up.

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