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What to watch for during the Titans “dress rehearsal” in
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 Message Posté le: Lun 29 Oct - 07:51 (2018)    Sujet du message: What to watch for during the Titans “dress rehearsal” in
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 The Titans travel to Pittsburgh this weekend for the third of four preseason games. Commonly referred to as the “dressed rehearsal game” http://www.titansfootballauthentics.com/kamalei-correa-jersey-authentic , this will likely be the last time that we see Marcus Mariota and most of the other key starters until Week 1 in Miami. With that in mind, here are a few of the things that I’ll be looking for on Saturday afternoon at 3:00 CT.Marcus Mariota attacking downfieldChristopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY SportsThrough the first two preseason games, we’ve seen Marcus Mariota and the first team offense for a grand total of three drives. Two of those three have resulted in touchdowns which is certainly a good sign for Matt LaFluer’s new-look unit, even considering the “it’s just preseason caveat”. Mariota’s numbers look good — 6 of 10 for 122 yards and 2 touchdowns — but they are a bit misleading. The vast majority of those yards — 85 to be exact — have come from a quick slant that Nick Williams turned in to a 38-yard play and a wide receiver screen to Taywan Taylor for a 47-yard touchdown. The throws on both of those plays were on-time and well-placed — and that matters, even on the short passes — but the degree of difficulty was not exactly high. In fact, we’ve seen very little of Mariota attacking down the field in preseason. None of his completions have traveled more than 10 yards in the air. In fact, the only pass he’s attempted that’s traveled more than 10 yards in the air was the severely underthrown — or miscommunicated —go route to Corey Davis against Tampa Bay last weekend. This offense is designed to get the ball in the hands of playmakers in space — and that’s exactly what it’s done so far — but I’ll be interested to see if the Titans expand their intermediate to deep passing concepts against the Steelers on Saturday. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to see an offense that can be explosive without requiring Mariota to hit high degree of difficulty passes all the time, but at some point a good defense is going to take the underneath stuff away and force the passing game to win over the top. It would be good to see Mariota connecting with his targets deeper downfield in Pittsburgh.Corey Davis getting involved in the passing gameJim Brown-USA TODAY SportsCorey Davis is saying and doing all the right things right now. He’s changed his diet, put in extra work on the JUGS machine, and taken a leadership role among the wide receivers. In practice http://www.titansfootballauthentics.com/will-compton-jersey-authentic , he’s often looked the part of a true #1 receiver. However, after missing the first preseason game in Green Bay, Davis was targeted just once against the Bucs. I don’t take that as a red flag, mostly because the Titans only attempted 7 passes while Davis was in the game and a couple of those were designed screens where he wasn’t even running a route. However, Titans fans want to see Davis do the things that they hear about from practice reports and that’s understandable. His rookie year was a roller coaster, ranging from the highs of his 6 catch, 69 yard debut against the Raiders to the lows of the 3 catch, 27 yard performance in Pittsburgh and then back to the high of the 5 catch, 63 yard, 2 touchdown line he put up in New England in the playoffs. For the 2018 Titans to get to where they want to go, Davis will need to more consistently live near the top of that range of outcomes. Davis should get some significant run with the first team offense on Saturday and it would be good to see him make some plays while he’s out there. Adoree’ Jackson vs JuJu Smith-SchusterCharles LeClaire-USA TODAY SportsJackson and Smith-Schuster played together at USC and remain close Youth Marcus Mariota Jersey , often interacting and supporting each other on social media. They’re also two of the most dynamic young players in the NFL at their respective positions and will likely get a chance to line up against each other on Saturday. Even if these two weren’t friends, this would be one of the most intriguing matchups of the game. Jackson has had an excellent camp and appears poised to become one of the Titans biggest stars on defense. He’s yet to show a lot of that playmaking ability in the first two preseason games — again, in very limited opportunity — but I fully expect it to show up often during this season. Jayon Brown working with the first team defenseBenny Sieu-USA TODAY SportsOne guy that’s gotten a lot of opportunity during the first two preseason games is second-year linebacker Jayon Brown. He’s played a bunch of snaps with first round pick Rashaan Evans being out and veteran starter Wesley Woodyard missing the Buccaneers game with an injury. Brown has constantly been around the ball when he’s been out there. In the past week, nearly every media outlet covering the Titans — including this one — has written a piece talking about the impression #55 has made and whether or not he could even earn a role as a full-time starter in this defense. Woodyard returned to practice this week and likely will at least see some snaps on Saturday, so it will be interesting to see whether it is Brown or Will Compton who joins him in the starting lineup in the base defense. Brown will likely get a chance to play a lot of snaps in Pittsburgh, so even if he doesn’t get the starting nod this week, he will get a chance to continue his push for a bigger role. The battle for the CB5 roster spotTroy Babbitt-USA TODAY SportsThere are only a few roster spots that I really feel are truly up for grabs still. Guys like David Fluellen, Nick Williams, Corey Levin, Julius Warmsley, and Sharif Finch have largely solidified their spots on the 53-man roster. I think it would be an upset at this point if any of those guys got cut (barring injury of course). One of the spots that now has my attention is the fifth cornerback position. The Titans are almost certainly going to keep at least five here and after season ending injuries to Tye Smith and Kalan Reed Youth Rashaan Evans Jersey , there are only four guys that clearly belong on the team — Malcolm Butler, Adoree’ Jackson, Logan Ryan, and LeShaun Sims. The top two competitors for that fifth spot right now appear to be UDFA Rico Gafford and journeyman practice squader Kenneth Durden. Both have had good and bad moments in preseason action, and it seems like this job is still wide open. In fact, I’d say there is a decent chance that this is a spot that the Titans address with a waiver claim after roster cuts on September 1st, but for now I’m interested to see what Gafford and Durden do with their opportunity.Harold Landry, Aaron Wallace, and Sharif Finch versus Steelers starting tacklesChristopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY SportsBrian Orakpo remains out with a shoulder injury of some sort that was suffered during the second practice of training camp. Derrick Morgan had surgery to repair a torn meniscus suffered in the second preseason game and will likely be out for another three to four weeks (or until Week 2 or 3 of the regular season). That means that the Titans young edge rushers — Landry, Wallace, and Finch — will need to be ready to play a significant role early in the season even if Orakpo is ready to return by Week 1. Each of these guys have flashed during preseason — particularly Landry and Finch — but much of their best work to this point has come against backups like Kyle Murphy http://www.titansfootballauthentics.com/dion-lewis-jersey-authentic , Byron Bell, and Brad Seaton. The Titans won’t be seeing guys like that when the regular season opens — at least until they play the Texans — so we need to see what these guys can do against the Steelers quality starters in Alejandro Villanueva and Marcus Gilbert. Landry and Wallace are likely to start and get most of the snaps early, but I’d be surprised if they don’t get Finch some reps before the Steelers starters come out. If they can pick up a sack or a few pressures early, that could do a lot for their confidence heading in to Week 1.Titans Fan Guide: Showdown Saturday Edition #4 Ohio State at #9 Penn State 7:30 PM ABC- This game has settled the playoff fates of these two teams and Big Ten in the past couple of years. College GameDay is in town. Ohio State is 4-0 and coming off a ho hum 49-6 beatdown of Tulane while PSU is also 4-0 with a come from behind 63-24 victory over Illinois (no really, Illinois was leading in the third quarter). Ohio State is missing stud defensive end Nick Bosa as he got injured in the TCU game. Can the Nittanny Lions use the raucous 100K+ crowd to upset the Buckeyes again? Both QBs have put up monster numbers. It will be interesting to see which defense shows up. Ohio State prospects to watch1. Dre’Mont Jones 6’2 295 DL RS Junior- A disruptive force in the interior of the defensive line. Pass rush ability is a plus. Holds up well at the point of attack. Had a stellar game against TCU a couple of weeks ago. Lateral agility is among the best in the country. Fundamentally sound as most Buckeye DL are under the tutelage of Larry Johnson, Sr. 2. Dwayne Haskins 6’2 214 QB RS Sophomore- A legit Heisman contender that waited for his turn until this year. He’s blown up immensely with multiple touchdown games both running and passing. A plus arm. Inexperience will show at times with some silly throws. A much better passer than JT Barrett and we saw glimpses when he came in relief during the Michigan game last season. Has shot up the boards at a rapid pace. 3. Kendall Sheffield 5’11 185 CB Junior- The next star in line of a cornerback factory that is Ohio State. Laterally adept. Ball skills are on point. Excellent at covering the receiver all the way through the route. The leader of a youthful but extremely talented secondary that could the best in the country. 4. Isaiah Prince 6’6 310 OT Senior- The man in charge of blocking the blind side for Mr. Haskins. Is one of the better tackle prospects in the country that no one talks about. Shows a remarkable ability in the short areas. Footwork is not a plus nor a negative either. Middle round type that could develop into a starter at the next level. Penn State prospects to watch1. Trace McSorely 6’0 195 QB RS Senior- A carbon copy of Johnny Football with better passing ability and an attitude to match. Not much of a future at the NFL level as a QB due to size questions, unfortunately but a fun college QB. 2. Juwan Johnson 6’4 229 WR RS Junior- A similar type of prospect to Allen Lazard / Kelvin Benjamin. A big body receiver that will box out smaller defenders but isn’t the most athletic guy there. McSorely’s main target regardless of situation and score. South Carolina at #17 Kentucky 7:30 PM SEC Network- Yes, you read that correct. Kentucky is. ranked. in. football. It’s actually the first time that both Kentucky and Duke are ranked in the top 25 together since the 1950s. South Carolina is 2-1 with a cancelled game due to Hurricane Florence. Kentucky is 4-0 after a 28-7 win over Miss State last week. Could be the fun game of the day if things break right.South Carolina prospects to watch1. Deebo Samuel 5’11 215 WR RS Senior- Deebo is one of the most dynamic athletes at receiver in the nation. He’s South Carolina’s version of Percy Harvin. A do it all weapon for the Gamecocks that also returns kicks. Above average route runner. Quicker than fast. A guy who is willing to out tough the defender for a contested ball despite being 5’11. Profiles similarly to Kendall Wright. 2. Bryan Edwards 6’2 205 WR Junior- One of the best receivers in the SEC that hardly anyone talks about due to his teammate Samuel. He’s a physical force of nature that can go up and get it. A solid athlete that can stretch defenses vertically if needed. Kentucky prospects to watch1. Josh Allen 6’4 230 EDGE Senior- No, the current Bills QB did not transfer to Kentucky to play defense. This Josh Allen has been rising up the boards in a similar fashion, though. He’s a pretty good athlete for the position and should test well. Flashed a ton of potential over the past few weeks. Can set the edge and play the run well. Not the most fundamentally sound but is improving. 2. Benny Snell 5’10 223 RB Junior- Snell is probably the most underrated running back in the country due to the depth of the class and the program he plays for. A physical power back that can pound the rock at least 30 times without fatigue. Pass blocking is a plus. Vision and IQ are a plus as well. Rarely has yards for loss on his resume. #7 Stanford at #8 Notre Dame 7:30 PM NBC- Stanford is coming off a thrilling 38-31 win over Oregon last week due to some poor officiating. Notre Dame is 4-0 with a not that close 56-27 win over Wake Forest. Notre Dame has a solid defense to cover the Cardinal star RB Bryce Love. Stanford loves to use the just throw it up to the big guy play all the time in its passing offense. Which offense can gear up the fastest? Stanford prospects to watch1. Bryce Love 5’9 196 RB Senior- Has home run speed. Footwork is a major plus. Makes an effort as a pass blocker despite his frame. Has a supernatural ability to sniff out the correct angles when lanes are clogged up. Has struggled a bit in 2018 for some reason. 2. J.J. Arcega-Whiteside 6’2 222 WR Senior- Baby Mike Evans. That’s all. He has had a tremendous start to the 2018 season and should be drafted in the middle rounds. Notre Dame prospect to watch1. Te’Von Coney 6’0 240 LB Senior- He has enough athleticism to be a sideline to sideline defender when needed. A playmaker for the legit Fighting Irish defense. Football IQ and tackling ability are major pluses. Ole Miss at #5 LSU 9 PM ESPN- Strength meets strength in Baton Rouge. The high powered Ole Miss offense gets another shot at a top five team after failing miserably against Bama. The LSU defense is pretty solid as well. A revenge game for LSU HC Ed Oregeron. Ole Miss is 3-1 while the Tigers are 4-0. Can the Ole Miss offense unlock the stingy LSU defense enough to score a bunch of points? Can the LSU offense keep up if their defense fails?Ole Miss prospects to watch1. D.K Metcalf 6’3 225 WR RS Sophomore- Metcalf has done nothing to dissuade me from him being WR2 on my board. He’s a physical specimen. A sound route runner with a ton of deep ball ability. Arguably one of the best receivers in the entire nation.2. A.J Brown 6’1 225 WR Junior- Projects to be an excellent slot weapon at the pro level. He knows how to run routes and when to vary his speed and depth in each route. 3. Greg Little 6’5 325 OT Junior- Little is the best offensive tackle prospect in the country. Has the potential to be a franchise type of left tackle in the pros. Lateral agility and size are huge pluses. IQ is a plus. Laremy Tunsil who? He has that kind of potential and talent. LSU prospects to watch1.Greedy Williams 6’1 182 CB RS Sophomore- Williams has the speed and athleticism thing down pat along with the height. Lateral agility is a major plus. Can keep up with any receiver in the nation. Has consistency issues that pops up every now and then. Among the best corners in the nation.2. Devin White 6’0 240 LB Junior- Next man up to take the star linebacker turn in Baton Rouge before going pro. White has flashed a bunch over his first two years. He’s now the leader of the defense. Height may be an issue at the next level but the athleticism isn’t. Plus character and work ethic. Somewhere between Duke Riley and Kendall Beckwith.3. Nick Brossette 6’0 221 RB Senior- The heir apparent to current Washington Mascot That Shall Not Be Named RB Derrius Guice. He played really well in the season opener against Miami. A different type of back than Guice. More of a thunder type of back.

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