Weekend Mailbag: Jim Wyatt Answers Questions From Titans Fans

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NASHVILLE – Quarterbacks, rookies and players coming off injuries reported to Titans training camp on Thursday, and the rest of the team's veterans are scheduled to report on Tuesday.

For now, it's just for COVID-19 testing.

But hey, it's a start.

And if you've clicked the story link to this page, you've made it to the start of the weekend mailbag.

Let's go…

Here's the link to ask questions: CLICK HERE.

Nicolas Wolf from Trier, Germany
Question:
Hi Jim. My message reaches you 7269 kilometers outside of downtown Nashville. Here in Germany the football (soccer) season has just ended -closed for public, without fans.
However, in order to enhance the atmosphere in the stadium, supporters from various clubs were able to send in pictures that were then installed as cardboard in the stadium ranks (see this article: https://time.com/5828699/soccer-cardboard-cutouts/)).
My question now is, in the case of an NFL season without spectators, is there a possibility that fans can somehow still express their support? Many thanks and stay safe.

Jim: Hi Nicolas. Good to hear from you. I've seen some leagues do that, and I actually like the idea. I'm a big Dodgers fan, and they're doing the same thing. The sight of loyal Dodgers fan Mary Hart and former manager Tommy Lasorda (at least fan cutouts of them) behind home plate at Dodger Stadium this week has made me feel a little better about fans not being in the stands. But, of course, I'd rather see the real Mary Hart and Tommy Lasorda – and real Dodgers fans – in the stands. And the Titans would like to see fans in the stands, too, so that remains the focus. The folks at the ticket office continue to explore ways to make it happen in a way fans can social distance at Nissan Stadium. If the city regulations don't allow it, then I guess we'd move to Plan B. I'm still holding out hope for Plan A. Stay safe in Germany!

Ted Gilcrest from Clarksville, Tennessee
Question:
Hey, Jim. I know the Titans have said they have moved on from Logan Ryan and he was supposed to sign with the Jets this past spring but, I haven't seen that happen. Is there a chance once the season begins that he might garner interest from the Titans again? Especially if someone in the defensive backfield gets hurt? Can't wait for football. Go Titans!

Jim: Hi Ted. Never say never, right? But I don't see that happening. I suspect someone will sign Logan. It might not be for the money he's been looking for, but he's going to end up on a roster at some point.

Carlous Hinton from Anchorage, Alaska
Question:
Are we going after Clowney or are we going with the pass rushers we got, talk to me jim.

Jim: Oh, man. They're even talking about Clowney-to-the-Titans in Alaska. And they said it would be a cold day in ... OK, I'll stop and just say: TBD.

Chris Haliburton from Bells, Tennessee
Question:
Hi Jim. I've brought my son to the open practices the last four years. We've always enjoyed watching the Titans practice and consider it to be a great bonding time. With the Covid-19 measurements, what are the Titan players doing to connect with their fans?

Jim: Hey Chris. Unfortunately, as you alluded to, practices at Saint Thomas Sports Park won't be open to fans, as the NFL has mandated. I can tell you the team is exploring ways to virtually engage with fans during training camp practices to replace the in-person contact that normally occurs. So, stay tuned -- details to come.

Alan Zwirner from Torrance, California
Question:
Been an Oiler since 76'. Born in 1970, moved to Texas in 75. My Grandfather was a lawyer who knew Kenneth Adams and was fortunate enough to be in the Owners box, on the sideline with Boy scouts of America against the Saints with the win! 42 years later we have this. My question is for games this year the best way players stay safe while playing would require players to wear helmets with face shields and gloves along with their mouthpiece. Would it be feasible to extend the face mask to the lowest part of the helmet? 2nd, if families were allowed to go to the stadium and take up say 3/4 seats and you social distant say a couple 10ft away and a individuals, say 12ft. Would you believe that could also be viable?

Jim: Thanks for the background, Alan. Great story. Regarding helmets, the league's engineers and a sports equipment company have both tested prototypes for a facemask with a face shield to protect against the coronavirus, but it remains to be seen if it will be used. I have seen several players speak up who are opposed to the shield, and I also saw this week where Seahawks QB Russell Wilson has been working out with a shield in the event he wears one. The expectation is the shields will be recommended, but not required for players. As for the social distancing inside Nissan Stadium, folks at the ticket office have been evaluating a number of reduced capacity plans. Where that ends up is still to be determined, and again the team will need to continue working with state and local government officials to determine the number of fans permitted to attend games at Nissan Stadium this fall (assuming some will be allowed).

Jeremy McFarlin from Hurricane Mills, Tennessee
Question:
What would happen if one member of the team, staff, or pr staff comes down with Covid? What would the team do? What would the NFL do?

Jim: Hey Jeremy. Well, those players will be isolated, and they'd have to follow protocols to return. And I don't think it's a matter of "if" someone tests positive with COVID-19, but when. Already we've seen different leagues work through the process with success.

Donley Canary from St. Simons Island, Georgia
Question:
Hi Jim. Longtime Titan season ticket holder, here. My question is the Titans have pursued Mr. Clowney for several months with no success. Why not take our 20 million dollar salary cap plus and 1). Solidify the offense line with signing of a proven commodity, i.e. Larry Warford 2). Get a proven, experienced NFL backup quarterback, i.e., Blake Bortles 3). Grab an experienced NFL wide receiver candidate and 4). Add an experienced NFL running back to serve as an backup to Derrick Henry instead of an unproven rookie. Filling and strengthening four (4) positions instead of just one seems to me as a better tradeoff for the Titans in 2020 than waiting on a player, Clowney, who has been inconsistent in his NFL career and shown little or no interest in us. Your thoughts please?

Jim: Hey Donley. Just because Clowney hasn't signed yet, doesn't mean he won't sign. Keep in mind, he hasn't signed anywhere. So the team – and everyone else interested in him – will continue to be patient. The reality is he hasn't missed anything yet with no offseason program, OTAs, or minicamps. And the season is still seven weeks ago, so there's no time to panic. As for making other additions, sure I think the GM is looking at options at a number of other positions. Right now, though, he wants to see his own guys on the field to know exactly where things stand. I will say the team is far from desperate at guard or back-up running back. The team has two starting guards, and Darrynton Evans was drafted to be the back-up running back in 2020. I'm not ruling out additions at some other spots, however.

Troy Lillard from Nashville, Tennessee
Question:
Hello Mr Jim Wyatt my question for you is with the no preseason how do the coaches or staff evaluate the guys who are at the bottom of the roster and the undrafted free agents seems like there are gonna get the short end on this deal what are your thoughts on this?

Jim: Hey Troy. Well, the evaluation will have to come from watching training camp practices if/when preseason games are officially canceled. There's no doubt the lack of preseason games – and joint practices with other teams – will make it a lot more difficult for undrafted rookies to win a job. The good news is rosters have been bumped from 53 to 55, and more practice squads are available this year.

Darryl Beckles from El Paso, Texas
Question:
Hello Jim. How's everything going during this crazy time? More of a statement than a question. Where's the love at from Madden? 😂😂 I know it's just a game and it doesn't mean anything in real life but dang I thought we were better than that -- players and overall defense and offensive ratings are horrible. Just wanted to share that, no matter what we do as the Titans organization we never get no love stay up Titan nation it'll come

Jim: I hear ya, Darryl. The Titans earned some national love on the way to the AFC Championship game last year. Now it's time to do it again – on the field …

Simon Aston from Leeds, England
Question:
Hi Jim. Greetings again from the UK! Should we be worried that the first two round draft picks have yet to sign their contracts? Is there any specific date that rookie contracts have to be signed by? Stay safe!

Jim: Hey Simon. All but first-round pick Isaiah Wilson and second-round pick Kristian Fulton have signed. I expect that to happen in the coming days.

Jon Kerlikowske from Franklin, Tennessee
Question:
Hi Jim! With the rookies set to report the day your Tuesday mailbag drops, how about a review on the status of who is signed and who isn't. If a rookie draftee is not signed can they still participate? Thanks, hoping our Titans are about to get busy!!

Jim: Hey, Jon. Just touched on this with Simon from the UK. So far, Darrynton Evans, Larrell Murchison, Cole McDonald and Chris Jackson have all inked deals. The only ones left are the first two picks, and it's just a matter of time for those guys. At this point, guys are just getting tested for COVID-19, so they haven't missed anything yet.

Have a great weekend everyone!

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