Trip to Oregon Days Before Training Camp Strengthened Bond Between Titans QB Marcus Mariota, WR Adam Humphries


NASHVILLE – If Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota and receiver Adam Humphries look like they already have a great rapport, it's because they do.

And there's a reason.

Mariota invited Humphries to Oregon just days before the start of training camp and the two spent a lot of time together. They threw passes on the field, played golf, had meals together, and really got to know one another. This on top of the time they spent together during the offseason in Nashville.

During the first three days of training camp, Mariota and Humphries have been on the same page. Humphries attributes it to the work they've put in – including his trip out West.

"Obviously we spent a lot of time together in the spring working but going up to Oregon and spending one-on-one time with Marcus, meeting his girlfriend and some of the people he grew up with at Oregon, it was huge," Humphries said. "And it was cool to see the type of guy he is and how he handles his stuff.

"It was just a good time to build chemistry and find out what type of person he is. I think that definitely helps. And he's obviously a great guy."

Humphries, who signed with the Titans in March after playing his first four NFL seasons with Tampa Bay, traveled to Oregon, where Mariota played his college ball, on July 18-19. Mariota reported to training camp with the team's quarterbacks on July 22, just a few days before the entire team. Prior to working with Humphries, Mariota also worked in California in July with a number of the team's other receivers, including Tajae Sharpe, Taywan Taylor, Cameron Batson and A.J. Brown.

Receivers Corey Davis, Darius Jennings and Humphries also had a throwing session away from Saint Thomas Sports Park earlier in the offseason before the start of the offseason program.

In Oregon, Mariota took snaps from center Hroniss Grasu, his teammate with the Titans and at Oregon, and then dropped back to throw passes to Humphries, who ran routes. They talked football, life and more.

During the course of one of their workouts, they also discussed a hand signal Mariota planned to give Humphries if the defense gave the offense a certain look. On the second day of training camp, when the defense lined up a certain way, Mariota and Humphries made eye contact.

"He looked out at me, and gave me the signal we'd talked about," Humphries said with a smile, "and it helped out.

"The chemistry is something that we'll continue to build."

Humphries said the time the two players spent in Oregon was well worth the trip.

Humphries, who played at Clemson, had never been to Oregon before taking Mariota up on his invitation.

"Just being able to sit down and eat breakfast and dinner with him, play golf, you know him a lot better than just walking around in meeting rooms and the locker room," Humphries said. "It was good to share that experience with him and really get to know him."

Earlier this offseason, Mariota discussed the impact Humphries could have on the team on the field, and in the locker room while working with younger players.

In 2018, the 25-year-old Humphries had a career high in receptions (76), receiving yards (816) and receiving touchdowns (five). The 5-foot-11, 195-pounder became Tampa Bay's top slot receiver while catching 219 passes for 2,329 yards and nine touchdowns over the last four seasons.

"I think having conversations with him, being around him now, you understand how savvy and smart he is as football player," Mariota said of Humphries. "I think that presence for that young group of receivers will benefit all of those guys. But I think Adam does a great job of just coming in, learn the offense as much as he can so that he can hopefully lead those guys and do his best."

Three days into training camp, Mariota-to-Humphries has been a nice combination.

Humphries looks around and sees a lot of options for his quarterback, in addition to himself. The transition to Tennessee, he said, has been great so far.

"We have a ton of playmakers all over the field and I am excited to see what we can do when the season comes," he said. "It's been great here. Everyone on this team is fun to work with. The transition has been smooth, and obviously the city is awesome. I am looking forward to the future." looks back at the first four NFL seasons of former Buccaneers wide receiver Adam Humphries, who signed with the Titans as an unrestricted free agent. (AP Photos)

New Titans wide receiver Adam Humphries works out with teammates during the first week of the team's offseason program at Saint Thomas Sports Park. (Photos: Gary Glenn)

Titans introduce WR Adam Humphries, G Rodger Saffold, and DE Cameron Wake during opening week of free agency. (Photos: Gary Glenn)

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