Tennessee Titans: New additions shine in preseason opener

Tennessee Titans general manager Jon Robinson was on the team’s flagship radio station, 104.5 The Zone (Nashville), just before their preseason opener was set to kickoff last night.

He was asked how he would feel watching the team that he put together compete tonight, given all the sweat equity poured in this offseason to reconstruct the Titans’ roster.

He replied that he would be nervous, excited, and proud of his first stint as GM so far.

By the time the final buzzer sounded, Robinson just felt proud.

Tennessee looked impressive in their 27-10 win over the visiting San Diego Chargers last night, and the new additions brought on by Robinson had everything to do with it.

Running back DeMarco Murray, Robinson’s first big fish to land, electrified the home crowd with a 71 yard touchdown run in the first quarter. He finished the night with 93 yards on just six carries.

Murray then gave way to another Robinson addition, rookie running back Derrick Henry. The former Heisman Trophy winner picked up where he left off in last year’s National Championship game, shredding through the Chargers’ defense. He finished with 74 yards on 10 carries. He also scored on the ground.

Rookie first round right tackle Jack Conklin played like a veteran last night, more than holding his own against San Diego’s starting defensive line. He played a clean game (no penalties) and helped to keep Marcus Mariota upright the entire first quarter.

Rookie fifth round wide receiver Tajae Sharpe continued his stellar training camp play with a 31 yard reception on the second play of the game. He finished with 2 catches for a team high 35 yards before exiting the game because of concussion-like symptoms. Free agent receivers Rishard Matthews and Andre Johnson also had 2 grabs a piece.

Robinson’s rookie third round safety out of MTSU, Kevin Byard, made a spectacular interception last night. He even showed off his wheels with an entertaining run-back, although video evidence ultimately ruled him down at the catch.

Free agent cornerback Antwon Blake had a solid debut for Tennessee, playing well on the outside and breaking up two pass plays. Second round pick Austin Johnson (DT) and fifth round pick LeShaun Sims (CB) also contributed and made tackles.

It’s an encouraging sign when the Titans can win by 17 and not even mention the names Marcus Mariota, Delanie Walker, or Jurrell Casey…even in a preseason game.

Maybe Jon Robinson is giving them the long-overdue help they so rightly deserve.

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