Jamarco Jones

Titans Release OL Jamarco Jones

The right tackle situation in Tennessee remains in flux, with one competitor for the starting role being let go. The Titans announced on Thursday that Jamarco Jones has been released.

The 27-year-old was involved in a pair of scuffles during training camp practices this week, as noted (on Twitter) by ESPN’s Turron Davenport. Jones took part in a confrontation with Pro Bowl defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons on Tuesday, then executed a crackback block earlier today. The dust-ups caused by his actions will see his time in Nashville cut short with one year remaining on his contract.

Jones was due $2.45MM this season, but moving on post-June 1 will allow the Titans to see $2MM in cap savings. That financial benefit will be balanced against the loss of a potential right tackle starter to open the season. The gambling suspension handed down to Nicholas Petit-Frere will leave him unavailable for the first six weeks of the campaign. Jones, who started seven of his 36 career games with the Seahawks, had been receiving first-team reps during practice as a contender to fill in for Petit-Frere in the short term.

That will no longer be the case, but Tennessee does have recent signing Chris Hubbard available to win the RT job. The former Steeler and Brown could have a clear path to the starting spot with first-round rookie Peter Skoronski being used at guard and Jones now no longer in the picture. The latter will need to move quickly to find a new home with training camps well underway.

Jones did not play in 2022, after spending much of the season on IR. That missed action, coupled with the reason for his Titans release, will surely hinder his market as a free agent. Finding an opportunity as a swing tackle will likely be the best-case scenario for the former fifth-rounder. The Titans, meanwhile, will move forward with what they hope will be more orderly practice sessions and a sufficient number of contingences regarding their offensive line situation.

Latest On Peter Skoronski, Titans’ O-Line

Entering Week 1, the Titans will have four new offensive line starters. The team’s plan was only to make three changes up front, but Nicholas Petit-Frere‘s six-game gambling suspension will force a temporary change at right tackle.

Andre Dillard is expected to start at left tackle, seeing as the ex-Eagles first-round pick signed a three-year, $29MM deal. Tennessee will also return 17-game guard starter Aaron Brewer, but the fourth-year blocker — who received a second-round RFA tender — confirmed earlier this offseason the team is planning to slide him to center. This will leave three spots open, with two likely starters’ positions to be determined.

UFA addition Daniel Brunskill has experience at both guard and tackle, and TennesseeTitans.com’s Jim Wyatt notes the ex-49er starter/swingman will be an option to start the season at right tackle. First-round pick Peter Skoronski also fits this profile, though he has less experience at guard. But the acclaimed Northwestern tackle is also in the mix to fill in for Petit-Frere to start the season.

The plan for Skoronski appeared to be a shift to guard. The No. 11 overall pick spent most of his offseason working at guard, per Wyatt, though the Titans have also gave him tackle reps during their offseason program. A number of NFL evaluators viewed Skoronski as a clear-cut guard candidate, but the former Big Ten blocker did not play guard in college.

It would be an interesting assignment for Skoronski to start the season at right tackle before kicking inside. Tennessee might aim to simplify the top prospect’s rookie-year workload by stationing him at guard only during training camp, but for now, an O-line configuration with Dillard and Skoronski as the bookends remains in play. Regardless of where Skoronski lines up, the team expects him to start immediately.

Jamarco Jones, sixth-round pick Jaelyn Duncan and 2022 UDFA Andrew Rupcich as other options to fill in for the suspended Petit-Frere, per Wyatt. A former Seahawk, Jones has made seven NFL starts over his three-year career. He spent time at tackle in Seattle but did not play last season. After Jones lost the Titans’ left guard competition to Brewer, he spent most of last season on IR. Duncan spent most of his time in College Park at the Terrapins’ left tackle, while Rupcich would be a long shot here, as he joined Jones in not seeing any game action last season.

Tennessee has struggled to fill its right tackle post over the past few seasons. After not picking up Jack Conklin‘s fifth-year option and then letting him walk in 2020, the team has used three different primary starters there over the past three years. Isaiah Wilson became one of this era’s biggest draft busts, playing all of four career snaps, while 2021 second-round pick Dillon Radunz was unable to win the job during the 2021 or ’22 offseasons. (Dennis Kelly and David Quessenberry, respectively, were the Titans’ right tackle starters in 2020 and ’21.) Radunz, who has also spent time at guard with the Titans, would have seemingly been an option to step in for Petit-Frere. But the North Dakota State alum is still rehabbing the ACL tear he suffered in December. Radunz did not participate in the team’s offseason workouts, Wyatt adds.

The Titans released cornerstones Taylor Lewan and Ben Jones this offseason, doing so a year after cutting Rodger Saffold. Tennessee let four-year guard starter Nate Davis walk in free agency in March. Skoronski will be the linchpin of GM Ran Carthon‘s overhaul effort, though the team will not have a chance to see the unit at full strength until Petit-Frere’s October return.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/22/22

Here are Thursday’s minor moves:

Los Angeles Rams

Pittsburgh Steelers

Tennessee Titans

The Rams eyed Jolly as a UDFA target this year, Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic tweets. The Appalachian State product instead landed with the Browns. This move comes after the Rams placed Troy Hill on IR. The team also is uncertain to have Decobie Durant this week; Durant sustained a hamstring injury in Week 3.

A Kansas City-area native, Blanton will leave his home town again but rejoin a Rams team that carried him on its active roster or practice squad from 2019-21. Rams tight end Brycen Hopkins ran into a three-game suspension this week.

Jones vied for the Titans’ starting left guard job, which Rodger Saffold‘s cap-casualty cut vacated in March. Despite signing Jones to a two-year, $4.8MM deal in free agency, the Titans gave the gig to former UDFA Aaron Brewer. Although Jones has not played this season, he must miss four more games because of this transaction.

Titans Without CB Kristian Fulton, Two Others In Week 2

The Titans have quite the task ahead of them as they’re set to take on the Bills in Buffalo on Monday Night Football tomorrow. Their task just got a bit more challenging as they’ll have to defend quarterback Josh Allen without starting cornerback Kristian Fulton, according to the team’s Week 2 injury report.

After spending most of his rookie season on injured reserve, Fulton established himself as a starter on the Titans’ defense last year, recording two interceptions and 14 passes defensed. Fulton left plenty of room to improve in Year 3, but, after suffering a hamstring injury, Fulton’s improvement will have to wait at least another week.

Without Fulton, the Titans have a few options for who to start opposite rookie second-round pick Roger McCreary, who earned a starting spot with Fulton this offseason. Last year’s first-round pick, Caleb Farley, made his return last week after suffering a torn ACL in Week 6 of last season. Farley was pushing McCreary for the starting job opposite Fulton but McCreary ended up victorious in that position battle. Elijah Molden also pushed for the starting job, but he remains on injured reserve for now. Behind those two, Tennessee will have to employ backups Joshua Kalu, Chris Jackson, and undrafted rookie Tre Avery.

The Titans also listed two key backup players as “out” on the injury report. Dontrell Hilliard was set to back up star running back Derrick Henry, but a hamstring injury will hold him out this week. The report also gave the “out” status for backup offensive lineman Jamarco Jones, who competed for multiple starting jobs on the inside of the line this offseason.

In the absence of Hilliard, Henry will be backed up by rookie fourth-round pick Hassan Haskins and veteran reserve back Trenton Cannon. Without Jones, the Titans still have some strong backup options on the offensive line. Dillon Radunz was in the running for those interior line starting positions this offseason, as well, and Corey Levin and Dennis Daley add to the depth of the position in Tennessee.

Latest On Titans’ RT, LG Competitions

Second-year pro Dillon Radunz has the chance to win the Titans’ starting right tackle job, per Jim Wyatt of the team’s official website. That jibes with an ESPN report from last month, and it makes plenty of sense given that Radunz was selected in the second round of the 2021 draft with the expectation that he would be a long-term bookend on Tennessee’s O-line.

The possibility of Radunz competing for the team’s other OL vacancy, left guard, was floated earlier this year. HC Mike Vrabel subsequently indicated that the team would be focusing on Radunz as an RT candidate, although he will have to fend off 2022 third-rounder Nicholas Petit-Frere, who presently appears to be the most significant threat to his playing time. In his rookie campaign, Radunz started just one game while learning and developing behind former right tackle David Quessenberry, who signed with the Bills this offseason. According to Wyatt, Radunz has looked more comfortable during OTAs and minicamp, but obviously training camp will be a better gauge of where he stands.

While Radunz and Petit-Frere are battling it out for the right tackle slot, Wyatt confirms that Aaron Brewer and Jamarco Jones are the top candidates for the LG gig, as we heard several weeks ago (and throughout the offseason). Brewer, a 2020 UDFA, has started six games for Tennessee in his first two professional seasons, five of which came last year. Jones, meanwhile, signed a two-year, $5.75MM contract with the Titans in March, and one of his primary selling points was his versatility. Despite dealing with injury problems throughout his brief career, the 2018 fifth-round pick of the Seahawks has seen action all over the O-line.

Both Brewer and Jones received sub-par marks from Pro Football Focus for their 2021 work. This offseason, Jones has managed to stay healthy and has, in Wyatt’s estimation, demonstrated improvement, while Brewer missed time due to injury. Brewer’s familiarity with the offense will help, and Wyatt believes the Texas State product will ultimately win the LG job, but that battle will be one of the most hotly-contested for the Titans this summer. Whichever player emerges as the starter will have big shoes to fill, as Rodger Saffold had become a reliable fixture on the interior and earned his first Pro Bowl bid in 2021. He became a cap casualty in March and signed with Buffalo a week before Quessenberry.

The Titans finished the 2021 regular season with the No. 1 overall seed in the AFC. While Vrabel’s outfit fell to the Bengals in the divisional round of the playoffs, the club still has its eyes set on another deep postseason run. As such, Wyatt confirms that Tennessee will look at the free agent and trade markets if the RT and/or LG competitions are not going well.

Of course, the players who are on the free agent market at this point in the calendar year are generally available for a reason. The top RTs include Bryan Bulaga, Daryl Williams, and Marcus Cannon, all of whom were released by their previous clubs in March and who have not generated any reported interest since. Similarly, the Commanders released LG Ereck Flowers in March, and while our own Ely Allen noted that the former top-10 pick could make plenty of sense for Tennessee, we have not heard of any interest in his services.

Laurent Duvernay-Tardif may be an appealing option for the Titans if Brewer and Jones fail to impress, but LDT may not want to continue his NFL career. Nonetheless, potentially intriguing players could be cut as we get closer to the regular season, and GM Jon Robinson may be able to swing a trade if the FA market does not bear fruit.

AFC South Notes: Titans, Texans, Jaguars

The Titans were the No. 1 seed in the AFC last year, but they have seen a number of significant changes on offense. this offseason. With A.J. Brown and Julio Jones gone, wide receiver will be one of the most intriguing position groups to watch as training camp unfolds.

The team has former Ram Robert Woods set to start alongside first-rounder Treylon Burks. Both have significant question marks surrounding them, however, as Woods is coming off of a torn ACL and Burks missed nearly all of the team’s spring programs. That leaves the door open for other players to stand out and earn significant playing time during at least the early portion of the season.

One candidate is Nick Westbrook-Ikhine. The former UDFA will open up training camp as a starter, per Terry McCormick of TitansInsider.com. The 25-year-old put up notable numbers in 2021, averaging 12.5 yards per catch on 38 receptions and scoring four touchdowns. His third season could very well be his best, especially if he gets an extended look with the first team during the campaign.

Here are some other notes from the AFC South, including another positional battle in Tennessee:

  • In that same piece, McCormick details the competition facing the Titans at left guard. Assuming 2021 second-rounder Dillon Randuz starts at right tackle, where he has been practicing this offseason, LG should be the only spot on the line up for grabs. That competition would then be decided by free agent signing Jamarco Jones, who played in a rotational capacity in Seattle for the past three years, and Aaron Brewer, who likewise has backed up along different positions on the interior in Tennessee since 2020.
  • The Texans made a number of front office moves, as detailed by Aaron Wilson of Pro Football NetworkJames Liipfert has been promoted to assistant director of player personnel and college scouting director. He had previously served elsewhere in Houston’s scouting department, joining Nick Caserio‘sstaff after a lengthy tenure in New England. The Texans also promoted Ronnie McGill, another Patriots veteran, to pro scouting director one year after his arrival in Houston. He will be joined by D.J. Debick as an assistant, as the team also hired him from New England. The final personnel hires Wilson notes are those of R.J. Goodwin and Nate Leopold, both as assistants.
  • The Jaguars are once again losing a key analytics staffer. Eugene Shen, who had been the team’s VP of football analytics, is leaving to take a position outside of sports, per ESPN’s Seth Walder (Twitter link). Last year, Jacksonville parted ways with Karim Kassam, who was also a VP-level staffer within the analytics department.

AFC South Notes: Colts, Radunz, Jaguars

Darius Leonard underwent back surgery recently; the rehab effort may prevent the All-Pro Colts linebacker from beginning training camp on time. More clarity emerged on the injury. Leonard played through an ankle problem last season, and ex-Colts punter-turned-radio host Pat McAfee said recently (via Joel Erickson of the Indianapolis Star) a nerve issue in Leonard’s back caused the ankle trouble. More specifically, Leonard’s ankle injury lingered because of a calf issue Erickson tweets was caused by the back problem. The aforementioned nerve issue prevented Leonard’s calf from full functionality. Leonard still played 91% of Indianapolis’ defensive snaps last season and, boosted by a career-high eight forced fumbles, earned his third first-team All-Pro nod. Despite this complex issue leading to back surgery, the Colts are still expecting Leonard to return near the start of camp, per Erickson.

Here is the latest from the AFC South:

  • Previously mentioned as a potential left guard option, Titans 2021 second-round pick Dillon Radunz is now concentrating on the right tackle battle. With Radunz and rookie third-rounder Nicholas Petit-Frere matching up outside, Terry McCormick of TitanInsider.com notes former UDFA Aaron Brewer and ex-Seahawks backup Jamarco Jones are vying for the left guard gig (Twitter link). The Titans must replace cap casualty Rodger Saffold and free agency defection David Quessenberry — their latest right tackle stopgap — up front this year. Both 2021 starters are with the Bills now.
  • The groin injury Jaguars backup quarterback C.J. Beathard sustained is not expected to keep him out of training camp, Doug Pederson said. But the Jags received worse injury news on another front. Linebacker Jordan Smith will miss the season with a knee injury. A 2021 fourth-round pick, Smith played in two games last season.
  • Shifting back to the Colts, Morocco Brown‘s promotion will be from college scouting director to chief personnel executive, the Indianapolis Star’s Nate Atkins notes. Brown interviewed for the Steelers’ GM job and the Eagles’ assistant GM job this offseason. This will be his sixth year with the Colts. Matt Terpening will take over as Indy’s college scouting director, with area scout Jamie Moore rising to the assistant college scouting director post Terpening held for the past six years. Terpening has been with the Colts for 22 years.
  • Additionally, the Colts are naming Kasia Omilian as an NFS scout. Omilian, who will be identifying players for future drafts, becomes the first woman to hold a scouting title with the Colts, Mike Chappell of Fox 59 notes. Omilian has been with the team since 2019. Mike Lacy will rise from the NFS scout level to be an area scout for the team.

Titans To Sign Jamarco Jones

Former Seattle offensive lineman Jamarco Jones will sign a two-year, $5.75MM deal with the Titans (Twitter link via Adam Schefter of ESPN.com). The deal will also include $3.15MM guaranteed, marking a solid pay bump for the 25-year-old (26 in June).

[RELATED: Titans Cut Saffold]

Jones, a 2018 fifth-round pick, has been hampered by injuries throughout his young career. This year, he was limited to just ten games with a back issue, though he did make a couple starts in place of Damien Lewis at left guard. Still, he’s been productive while healthy. According to Pro Football Focus, he’s allowed just three sacks while on the field throughout his entire career.

Jones isn’t a world-beater, but he should a versatile piece of the puzzle for the Titans. Last year alone, he saw time at three different positions — right tackle, right guard, and left guard. In 2020, he played at every spot, save for center.

His exact role isn’t quite clear, but he’ll provide valuable support for an offensive line that will be without veteran Rodger Saffold.

Minor NFL Transactions: 12/23/21

Here are Thursday’s minor moves:

Chicago Bears

  • Signed to active roster: LB Sam Kamara

Houston Texans 

New York Jets

  • Signed off 49ers’ practice squad: S Kai Nacua

Philadelphia Eagles

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

  • Designated for return: OL Jamarco Jones

Tennessee Titans

Washington Football Team