Running Back A Major Factor
When looking at the roster breakdown for the Tennessee Titans, the running back position seems easy to project.
However, it will be a key factor in the team’s success or failure in 2017.
There is no suspense at the top, and likely little at the bottom when examining the running back position.
Some are speculating that the addition of versatile tight end Jonnu Smith, fullback Jalston Fowler could be on the bubble.
As part of the running backs, we will share are thoughts on Fowler.
Fowler and Joe Bacci are the two fullbacks currently on the roster, and even with Smith on board, this team will carry a fullback.
Bacci, a 6’1″ 245 rookie from Central Michigan has an uphill climb to surpass Fowler who was a Pro Bowl alternate last season.
Fowler is also the more versatile player who can also take carries at running back if necessary, and is a more than capable pass catcher.
Having Smith with the ability to step into the backfield and block is a plus, but Fowler is also a special teams player and will be on the opening day roster.
DeMarco Murray: The unquestioned starter returns after recording 1.287 yards and 9 rushing touchdowns. He also added 53 receptions for 377 yards and three scores.
Murray carried the football 293 times last season, but expect that number to fall some this season as Murray played most of last season with a foot and wrist injury.
Keeping him healthy and fresh for the stretch run will be key and with a more than capable backup, it will be easier to cut down his carries with little falloff.
Derrick Henry: The bruising Henry carried the football just 110 times in his rookie campaign, but with very good results.
He averaged 4.5 yards per carry in those attempts in racking up 490 yards and 5 touchdowns. He added 13 receptions for another 137 yards.
Henry showed that he is a more than capable receiver in the recently concluded OTA’s.
That alone should convince coaches that Henry is ready to be a bigger contributor and get him on the field more often this season.
Khalfani Muhammad: A seventh round pick(241 overall) in April’s NFL Draft, Muhammad is the change of pace back that the Titans have been looking for.
What exactly does the smallish Muhammad ( 5’7″ 174) bring to the table? Speed and more speed after posting s 4.35 40 at the University of California’s Pro Day.
That time would have been the fastest by a running back and tied for the fourth-fastest overall at the NFL Combine.
Muhammad also brings versatility and can be a kick and punt returner and ranks second on Cal’s all-time list in kick returns with 87, and kick return yards with 1931 in his career. He also showed his ability as a receiver at Cal with 55 receptions and 571 receiving yards in his four years in Berkeley.
David Fluellen: Fluellen finally gets his chance at the 53 man roster after two seasons on the practice squad.
Fluellen has size (5’11” 224) and brings good speed and vision to the field.
He would be a capable short term fill in for either of the top two backs if necessary. He can als play special teams.