On one front, Mike Munchak is excited about the opening of training camp, calling it “his favorite day in football.”
But on the other hand, Munchak and the Tennessee Titans have plenty of issues to deal, not the least of which is the unavailability of two of his top wide receivers as camp begins.
Kenny Britt is on the PUP (physically unable to perform) list, which means he won’t be able to practice until he passes his physical. And of even more concern for Britt, is the fact that his availability at the start of the season is in question because of his latest run-in with the law. Britt was charged with a DUI on the Fort Campbell army post last week.
Not only are the Titans without Britt, they still don’t know when first-round pick Kendall Wright will be available to them. Wright’s rookie contract is still not complete because of issues regarding guaranteed money in the fourth year of the deal and the matter of offset language the Titans want included in the deal.
Munchak spoke of his disappointment in Britt’s situation, but did not want to rush to judgment until all facts from the matter are
“We talked with Kenny and he is aware that we are very disappointed in his involvement in this recent situation. The league has a policy in place that addresses player conduct. We've been in conduct with the league, and when any situation comes up regarding any player, the league contacts you immediately,” Munchak said. “We are still gathering facts as to what did happen, and with the league will decide where we go from there. That's kind of the position we're in.
“We have to get the whole story, and find out exactly what happened, not just Kenny's version or someone else's version. I think before you act, even though you want justice immediately when something happens, for us to do a knee-jerk reaction on Kenny or anyone would be wrong, to make a decision before I know everything.”
Munchak has on-field issues to sort through as well, mainly a number of positions where there will be competition for starting spots. Nowhere is that more prevalent or high profile in camp than at quarterback where Matt Hasselbeck will try to hold off 2011 first-round pick Jake Locker.
As camp opens on Saturday (Sunday is the first open practice to fans), Munchak indicated that those in battles for jobs will alternate with the first unit in order to determine the right combinations and fits regarding final decisions.
Munchak said that in order for Locker to unseat Hasselbeck, he has to prove he is the best man for the job right now and that he is ready to assume command of the offense.
“I think the first thing is if he's ready. Does he give us the best chance to make the playoffs this year, to win our division? That's what we're trying to get a feel for,” Munchak said. “We're not gonna put someone out there that we feel is gonna struggle at any position, not just the quarterback. The bottom line is winning football games. The guy that we feel is gonna move the team the best and put more points on the board is what you're looking it.”
Elsewhere, Leroy Harris and Fernando Velasco will battle at right guard, Eugene Amano will try to hold off Kevin Matthews at center, while Collin Mooney and Quinn Johnson will battle for the fullback spot.
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