NASHVILLE – Titans coach Mike Vrabel discussed Thursday morning's addition of veteran kicker Stephen Gostkowski during a video conference call with reporters.
It was among several topics Vrabel addressed during a nugget-filled session.
Let's hit on several of them ...
Gostkowski, formerly with the Patriots, has been named to four Pro Bowls during his career. He's a three-time Super Bowl champion.
In New England, he was teammates with Titans head coach Mike Vrabel.
Vrabel watched the 36-year-old Gostkowski work out earlier this week. He said he looked good from a health standpoint.
"We had an opportunity to sign a player that we thought would help the team after watching the workout," Vrabel said. "A lot is going to made about our history with Stephen, but in the end that doesn't really mean anything. It's a decision we felt as a team would help solidify the position."
Gostkowski, a fourth-round draft pick (118th overall) in the 2006 NFL Draft out of Memphis, was released by the Patriots back in March. The 6-foot-1, 215-pounder is the Patriots all-time leading scorer and he's currently 12th in NFL annals with 1,775 career points and 374 field goals. Gostkowski's 87.4 percent field goal accuracy rate is the highest in Patriots history and fifth in NFL history.
Gostkowski's career regular season stats: 374-for-428 on field goals (87.4%), 653-for-664 on point-after attempts (98%). In the playoffs, Gostkowski is 31-for-36 on field goals and 79-for-83 on PATs, and he's also been valuable on kickoffs, with 523 touchbacks.
"He's made a bunch of kicks, and his longevity and success (stand out)," Vrabel said of Gostkowski. "But this isn't a lifetime achievement award. This is about everybody's ability to (do) what we are going to do this year, and we are all hopeful that Stephen and everybody else is going to do their job, from the players to the coaching staff and the scouting department. That's why we work and try not to rely on what we have done in the past, but what we are planning to do in the future."
A Second Kicker?
In adding Gostkowski, the Titans waived kicker Greg Joseph.
But the team kept kicker Tucker McCann, who joined the team as an undrafted free agent earlier this offseason.
With roster cuts coming this weekend, and 16-man practice squads being formed across the league, is there chance the team keeps two kickers in the building this year because of COVID-19 concerns?
"There's an opportunity with 16 players on the practice squad for there to maybe be some players that you wouldn't normally keep traditionally," Vrabel said.
Vic Beasley Update
Vrabel said he plans to work on the field with veteran linebacker Vic Beasley today.
Beasley, a first-round pick (8th overall) of the Atlanta Falcons in the 2015 NFL Draft, has 37.5 career sacks. He joined the Titans after spending the past five seasons in Atlanta but he hasn't practiced with the team yet.
Beasley is on the team's Non-Football Injury list.
"This will be a hot topic today, but again I am hopeful I'll be able to work with Vic today on the field as we start that return to play protocol," Vrabel said. "I am happy and excited that that is going to happen today."
Vrabel said linebacker Derick Roberson, who left practice early on Tuesday, won't practice today.
Vrabel didn't give an update on Roberson's health, "but I can tell you he won't be practicing today."
Vrabel also said he's "hopeful" running back Darrynton Evans and cornerback Kristian Fulton will be on the practice field today in some capacity. Both players have missed over a week of practice time.
"We'll see what they can do today," Vrabel said of Evans and Fulton. "Hopefully they've been able to take the meetings and the walk-throughs, and all the opportunities we've tried to give them off the practice field. … It's how you work away from the practice field (when you're injured) that is critical, so we'll find some of that out here in the next couple of days."
Vrabel said he's hopeful cornerback Kareem Orr, who has missed practice time as well, will be on the field today in some capacity as well.