NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Titans were looking for another fast and physical player on special teams.
They found one in linebacker Daren Bates.
On Friday, the team agreed to terms on a deal with Bates. Bates played in 16 games last season with the Raiders, where he posted 12 tackles and was a key contributor on special teams. Prior to that, Bates played three seasons with the Rams.
TitansOnline.com looks back at linebacker Daren Bates' first five NFL seasons. (AP Photos)
Bates, who is from Memphis, played collegiately at Auburn. He was initially signed by the Rams as an undrafted free agent in 2013. He became the second key special teams performer to reach a deal with the Titans since the start of free agency, joining another former Oakland Raider, safety Brynden Trawick.
"It was impressive to watch Brynden and Bates on kickoff coverage in Oakland, race to the goalline to see who could get there first,'' Titans general manager Jon Robinson said. "Bates is another fast, violent player in the kicking game. That is predominantly what he's played is on special teams.
"I like his intensity, like his instincts and his reckless abandon to throw himself in there to make a play."
Bates (5-11, 225) has played in 60 games in his NFL career, and totaled 37 tackles. He's played a big role on special teams during his four seasons.
Bates played three seasons in high school at Christian Brothers in Memphis, and he was a two-time all-state performer at safety. He played his final high school season at Olive Branch in Mississippi.
While with the Rams, Bates made some spectacular plays on special teams.
In 2013, Bates returned a fumbled kickoff return for a touchdown against the Texans. In 2014, he leaped over the long-snapper in a game against the Giants and blocked the kick. He was named a captain with the Rams in 2015.
He was a key player on Oakland's special teams units last year.