NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Quinton Spain ended last season as the team's starting left guard, and he worked in that spot – on the first team -- throughout the offseason.
Yet Spain is fully aware not everyone is banking on him being there when the Titans open the season against the Minnesota Vikings on September 11.
He's OK with that, just as long as the decision-makers aren't the ones writing him off.
"I like being the underdog,'' Spain said with a smile. "That's kind of been the story of my life, and I like to prove people wrong. It is motivation for me."
Spain's mindset as he prepares for training camp?
"To keep working, and don't be satisfied with what is going on,'' he said. "Anything can happen, and you have to attack the offseason, come back in good shape and keep the spot."
An undrafted free agent out of West Virginia, Spain played in seven games, with six starts, during the 2015 season. He moved into the starting lineup when the Titans dealt with injuries on the offensive line during the course of the season.
And during organized team activities and the team's three-day minicamp, Spain continued to work in the spot.
"He was probably one of our most physical linemen that we had up front, which is what we want," coach Mike Mularkey said of Spain. "To be thrown in there as an undrafted o-lineman and to play against some of the guys that he was playing against, I thought he held his own.
"Now, he's got a fresh start right from the beginning. He's getting a fresh start, he's getting them with the starters. I think his progress has been very good."
At the end of the offseason program, Mularkey called Spain, a 6-foot-4, 330-pounder, the front-runner -- for now.
"He hasn't done anything to lose it," Mularkey said of Spain, and the starting spot.
Spain will face competition in training camp. Jeremiah Poutasi, Sebastian Tretola, Brian Schwenke and Josue Matias have all worked at guard this offseason.
At least one national website speculated earlier this month Spain's "reign is unlikely to continue" at left guard, opposite Chance Warmack.
Spain has heard that kind of talk before.
"I feel like everybody is going to have a shot at the spot,'' Spain said. "The competition level his high, but that is going to make the team better. I love the group. We are like brothers. I feel like we are good up front.
"But I am going to do everything I can to keep the spot."