NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Back in training camp, I wrote about Titans rookie linebacker Sharif Finch, and his inspirational story.
Finch, an undrafted free agent from Temple, lost his father at the start of camp.
Gregory Finch died of a heart attack on July 30. His mother, Wendy, passed away in 2015 after battling breast cancer.
Gregory Finch had 21 children. Sharif left the team for a stretch during camp to attend the funeral, and the brothers and sisters leaned on one another for support.
When he returned, Finch recorded his first NFL sack three days later against the Packers. Finch looked into the heavens and pointed to the sky with both hands after the sack.
"I've got my angels with me," he said.
Well, Finch's story didn't end there. He kept battling in training camp, and through the preseason, and he made the team's 53-man roster.
On Monday, he sat at his locker and recalled his emotions after learning the news.
And he thought about his parents.
"I feel so blessed," Finch said. "I got the opportunity I had been waiting on my whole life, one I had been praying for my whole life.
"I know pops is proud of me, and my mom is proud of me.
"I know they are watching me, and I feel so blessed. I know God is favoring me, and I've got my angels watching me, my mom and my pops. And I have the support of my family as well.
"My teammates, my family, everyone supported me. It's been like an emotional roller coaster."
When Luke Falk signed with the Dolphins after being released by the Titans, the team didn't waste any time finding a quarterback for the practice squad.
Logan Woodside, cut by the Bengals over the weekend, was signed, and he practiced with the team on Monday.
"Logan had a really good college career," Titans general manager Jon Robinson said. "We spent time with him in the pre-draft process and got to know him a little bit. I don't know if it's similar. He threw for a bunch of yards and a bunch of touchdowns up at Toledo. We're looking forward to working with him."
Woodside was a seventh-round pick by the Bengals in the 2018 NFL Draft
At Toledo, Woodside (6-2, 205) is the career record-holder for passing yards (10,514) and touchdowns (93). He had a 29-9 record at the school, and won the MAC Offensive Player of the Year and Vern Smith Award winner in 2017, when he threw for 3,882 yards and 28 touchdowns.
"We really liked him at Toledo – he was a good player," Titans quarterbacks coach Pat O'Hara said. "We lost Luke, but now we have Logan in here and we have to get him up to speed pretty quickly here."
Prep work for Dolphins
The Titans don't practice on Tuesday after hitting the field on Monday. The team returns to the field on Wednesday, when things will really get cranked up in preparation for the season opener at Miami.
Players said they'd spent time working on the Dolphins before this week, however.
"I've seen every play they ran," cornerback Logan Ryan said. "After every preseason game, after I watched our game, I watched the Dolphins game. So I think Week One you are going to watch a lot of film, because you have a lot of time to do it, kind of two weeks on top of what you had been watching during the offseason.
"But you know they have some things in their offense they haven't showed as well. You just have to know the guys, and I personally have been studying their receivers and running backs a lot."
Titans safety Kevin Byard said the team will be prepared.
"I did some peeking this offseason, because I knew it was going to be game one," Byard said. "We started preparing for those guys last week, but I've been prepping a lot to try and know as much as I can about them."