NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Sebastian Tretola learned a lot during his rookie season with the Titans.
So much, it's scary.
"Oh man,'' Tretola said with a smile. "If I knew some of the stuff I know now in college, there would probably be a little more money in my bank account. It has been unbelievable."
A sixth-round pick by the Titans out of Arkansas, Tretola played just three snaps in 2016 --- he came in late in the fourth quarter of the team's game against the Jaguars back on October 27. He was inactive for 14 games, and dressed out for another contest, but didn't see action.
Yet Tretola said he soaked in plenty while learning under veteran offensive line coach Russ Grimm, and an offensive line unit that finished the year ranked No.1 in the NFL by Pro Football Focus. Guards Quinton Spain and Josh Kline performed well in the middle of the line in 2016, which kept the Titans from making a move to get Tretola into the lineup sooner.
"It was definitely different, not playing,'' Tretola said. "Ever since I started playing football I have started, from the first year in high school up until last year (at Arkansas). But when you have one of the best o-lines in the NFL that you get to learn from and grow with and things of that nature, it makes it easier. Out of 32 o-lines, this is top tier.
"My first year was great because I was able to sit back and learn. We have two Pro Bowlers in Taylor (Lewan) and Jack (Conklin), and Ben Jones, who knows everything in the middle. And Q and Josh hold their own in there, and even the back-ups – (Brian) Schwenke and Dennis (Kelly), those guys helped me and they were ready to go at any moment. The experience was new to me, but it's something I think I might've needed to help me progress to the next step."
Tretola, a 6-foot-4, 314-pounder, started 35 of 36 games in college, including 24 of 26 games in his final two seasons at Arkansas. He started the final 24 games of his college career.
In his first season with the Titans, he worked across the line of scrimmage in practices from Pro Bowl defensive lineman Jurrell Casey, which also helped.
Casey believes Tretola has big potential. He did his best to offer Tretola some tips along the way.
"He has the skill-set, it just comes down to pushing yourself conditioning wise and being steady and learning when to do certain things,'' Casey said of Tretota. "He is going to be a great player. He has the physicality to get it done."
In 2017, Tretola has his sights set on getting on the field.
But he knows it's going to take a lot of hard work. During his rookie season, he learned patience, improved his footwork and learned how to be more effective with his hands.
"My mindset has not changed from when I originally came in here,'' Tretola said. "Obviously things had to slow down and I had to pick up on some things. Going into 2017 I am definitely vying for one of those starting positions."
The Titans select Arkansas G Sebastian Tretola in the sixth round (193rd overall) of the 2016 NFL Draft. (AP Photos)