Ask Jim: More Fan Questions as Preseason Arrives

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Suzanne Moore from Austin, TX

Question: Hey Jim: What do you think the chances are of the Titans' first season game against the Bucs being nationally televised live by CBS?

Jim: Hi Suzanne. Some markets won't be able to pick the game up because they also play in the late window: Arizona and New Orleans (FOX), Detroit and San Diego (FOX), Baltimore and Denver (CBS) and Cincinnati and Oakland (CBS). But other markets will have a choice, and it's an intriguing matchup because of quarterbacks Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston. I'm thinking markets like Portland or Honolulu will probably choose to air the Titans-Bucs game, and others might as well. Other CBS markets will have to decide what game fans would want to see or get the biggest ratings. I'm thinking Baltimore at Denver will be a pretty popular pick.


Tyler Beene from Knoxville, TN

Question: Hello Jim. DaQuan Jones was named the starter a couple of months ago. He was inactive for most of the season last year. At the end of the season, he started and made a name for himself. How is his camp? Is he becoming a force?

Jim: Hey Tyler. Jones got the start in the season-finale against the Colts, and he performed well. He had six tackles and a sack in that game after being inactive for eight games early on. Coaches were impressed, and that's why he was rewarded. I think Jones has looked good this offseason. He's a big man, and he should make a different on run defense this fall.


Tyler Johnson from Aiea, HI

Question: Do you think last year's O-line struggles with injuries, jelling, etc., was a big factor in Bishop Sankey's disappointing season last year? Do you think it has improved enough to boost the overall run game?

Jim: Back-to-back Tylers here. Nice. I'll be honest: Sankey's underwhelming rookie season could probably be blamed on a lot of things. For starters, he was playing catch-up all season after missing most the OTAs and just never got up to speed. The injuries and inconsistencies from the offensive line didn't help matters either. Another factor, of course, is the Titans fell behind so often early last year, they had to abandon the run, so he didn't get a lot of opportunities to feel comfortable in games. Sankey never carried the ball more than 18 times in a game, and he had 10 carries or fewer in 11 of the 16 games. Sankey has looked much more comfortable during training camp. He's also stronger, and sturdier. It should result in better results this fall.


Jeremy Owen from Nashville, TN

Question: Are we going to be wearing our away jerseys for home games this year?  It felt like I was going to away games every week.  On top of that I was surrounded by opposing team's fans. Do you think it will be like that this year?

Jim: The Titans will wear the navy blue as their primary home uniforms this fall, but some teams will wear white at home for September games – and put the opponent in dark uniforms -- to beat the heat. The Colts will play at Nissan Stadium on September 27. If it's in the upper 80 by chance, putting Indy in the dark blue might not be a bad idea.


Juan Lopez from Reno, Nevada

Question: Hey Jim, first off, congrats on your move from the Tennessean to Titans Online! Great to see you making that leap, brother. This is Juan V Lopez (@JuanVLopez), die-hard, west coast Titans fan since 1999. My question is: We haven't heard a lot about Bishop Sankey this offseason – is that a good thing or bad thing? What has his progression been like, from your perspective? Do you think he's ready to be the #1 guy this year? He's a relatively quiet guy, so it's tough to gauge where he's at. Any (hopefully good) news on him?

Jim: Hey Juan. Appreciate the email. I just addressed Sankey above, and it's true his progress has been encouraging. Hit me back again sometime.  


Bradley Phillips from Oliver Springs, TN

Question: Michael Griffin seemed to struggled last year as we were weak at safety. Do you see Daimion Stafford making a push to take his starting spot?

Jim: I'm going to use this space to give props to Griffin. He suffered a shoulder injury in November – and ended up needing surgery after the year – but he didn't miss a game. Griffin actually had two surgeries in the offseason. Griffin had 115 tackles a year ago, and he also had three sacks and two interceptions. Was he perfect? No. But let's face it: Griffin was hardly the problem on a bad team that finished 2-14 and had trouble stopping the run all season.


Kristof Varga from Budapest, Hungary**

Question: Hi Jim! Is there any young guy behind Brian Orakpo at OLB who can be more than just a situational pass-rusher? How good is Deiontrez Mount or Yannik Cudjoe-Virgil so far?

Jim: Good question Kristof. The preseason games will tell a lot here. The Titans have two solid starters here – Orakpo and Derrick Morgan. After that, they have a bunch of question marks. Mount has had his moments in camp, but guys like Cudjoe-Virgil and J.R. Tavai are getting a lot of reps and giving themselves a chance to stick. Jonathan Massaquoi is in the mix as well, and I'd say his chances of making it are boosted by his experience. But some roster spots can be had here, and the preseason games will decide.


Tavares Collins Nashville, TN

Question: Which Undrafted FA(s) have the best chance of making the team?

Jim: Ask me after a few preseason games. Right now, cornerback Cody Riggs is a solid bet, but guys like Tavai and Cudjoe-Virgil have a shot, too. On the offensive line, Josue Matias is having a solid camp as well.


Casey Flynn from Toucan Lake, California

Question: Hey Jim, I heard a lot about Marcus Mariota's pocket presence being a big question mark coming out of the draft, primarily because he rarely had to deal with a muddled pocket in Oregon's system. How's he looking in that area? Does he stand tall or get "happy feet"? Does he stay in the pocket or does he bounce out like Jake Locker had a tendency to do? Thanks a lot and keep up the good work!

Jim: Thanks Casey. In practices, Mariota looks pretty poised in the pocket. The guy stands in there and delivers the ball, although he'll tuck in and run as well. But let's keep it real here: Mariota's wearing a red jersey and can't get hit in practices. So how nervous can the guy really be in there? Heck, I might even stay in the pocket. We'll also get a lot better idea on how he handles things on this subject when the games start -- and the red jersey comes off.


Tyler Greenslade from Edmonton, Alberta Canada

Question: Hey Jim. Your coverage has been outstanding in camp so far, thanks for that. Peter King tweeted the other day that he was impressed with Yannik Cudjoe-Virgil. Can you speak to what you have observed from this player? Will he be make an impact on the Titans roster this year?

Jim: This has to be a record for Tylers in the mailbag. Appreciate the question. I have been impressed with Cudjoe-Virgil, who went undrafted after playing at Maryland. He's looked physical while making some plays on run defense, and he's also been impressive in coverage. He needs to be consistent in games, but he's kept the momentum going after a solid offseason.


Luis Murra from Torreon, Mexico

Question: I'm from México and I have been at LP Field (now Nissan) two times and one at Houston against the Texans. It´s easy to see a lot of competition at DL, WR, RB positions, but what about OLB and CB? Thank you!  ¡Arriba los Titanes

Jim: Hola Luis! I mentioned OLB above. It's wide open right now. A lot of guys in the mix, but not a lot of guys guaranteed spots. At cornerback, Coty Sensabaugh and Cody Riggs are looking like the top guys behind Jason McCourty, Perrish Cox and Blidi Wreh-Wilson, who's currently injured. Marqueston Huff is a versatile player who will definitely make the roster, but I'm counting him as a safety.


Bryan Burgmeier from Syracuse, NY

Question: Hey Jim. Looking at Sammie Hill's body of work, does he seem like the long term answer at nose tackle or is this a position the Titans will be looking to upgrade?

Jim: Sammie's still on the road to recovery. He's back and practicing, but has some work to do to be ready. The Titans like him, and expect him to make a difference this fall. But he's heading into the final year of his deal, so he'll need to produce to stick around after 2015.


Jeremy Raymer from Beechwood, New Brunswick. Canada

Question: I am a Nashville transplant living in Canada and a long-time fan of the Titans and all things Nashville. It is exciting to see so many fans from around the world participating in the "questions for Jim" segment, and great that you respond to them in their native language.  For those of us who are interested in all of the questions asked but only speak English, would it be possible to include a translation of both the question and your answer? Thank you so much for your work and good luck in your new post with the Titans!

Jim: Thanks for the mail, Jeremy. Will definitely give it a shot. The more I try and translate, however, the greater the chance of me botching the foreign language. :)

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