With only 76 days left until the Titans Preseason Kickoff, we look at one of the most terrifying Titans.
With only 76 days until the Tennessee Titans’ 2014 Preseason Kickoff, we continue our Preseason Countdown. Today, we look at the meanest and nastiest offensive lineman in recent Titans’ history: right tackle, “Big Country” David Stewart.
“Big Country” did not earn his nickname for nothing, standing at 6’7”, 315 pounds. Stewart was born in Decatur, Alabama on August 28, 1982, and he attended Moulton Lawrence County High School, where he earned Class 4A All-State as an offensive and defensive tackle. Stewart took his top talents to Mississippi State University where he had great success. As a senior, he earned All-SEC honors. His very successful college career led to him being drafted by the Tennessee Titans with 113th overall pick in the fourth round.
Stewart was inactive for all 16 games of his 2005 rookie season, as second round pick (and good friend of his) Michael Roos started at right tackle as a rookie. In 2006, Roos moved to left tackle and David Stewart started at right tackle, where they became one of the most dynamic tackle duos of the 21st Century. Stewart signed a seven-year, $36.8 million deal with $10 million guaranteed in 2008, prior to his two greatest seasons in the NFL. In 2008, the Titans went to the playoffs with a 13-3 record after starting 10-0, largely due to elite offensive line play that only allowed 12 sacks, protecting elder quarterback Kerry Collins. He was named to the 2008 All-Pro Second Team.
Following the 2008 season, the Titans started 0-6 in 2009, finishing 8-8. Despite an overall mediocre season, the Titans broke records, as running back Chris Johnson became only the sixth player to rush for 2,000 yards in a season (with 2,006), and he broke the yards from scrimmage record, previously held by Marshall Faulk. Chris Johnson was only able to do this with the help of the excellent offensive line that consisted of Michael Roos, Eugene Amano, Kevin Mawae, Jake Scott, and David Stewart.
"Big Country" was best known for his aggressive play against opposing defenses. His tough nature made him very frightening to opposing players that were much smaller and weaker, yet tried to pick a bone with him.
In 2012 and 2013, David Stewart fought leg and shoulder injuries. At the beginning of the 2014 free agency period, the Titans released David Stewart, who was entering the final year of his new contract in order to save $6.4 million in cap space after he failed a physical, likely due to injuries. “Big Country” is expected to live up to his nickname, per Michael Roos, as he will likely retire soon and spend his time hunting. David Stewart started all 104 of the games that he played in his nine seasons with the Titans, and he recovered five fumbles.
Have any suggestions for the rest of the countdown? Tweet me on Twitter at @KennethGoit. Also follow The Spot’s Tennessee Titans Twitter feed @spot_titans. GO TITANS!