Friday is the start of a three-day break across the NFL designed to allow players to take a collective breath ahead of the first week of the regular season. The only teams exempt from the pause are the Dallas Cowboys and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which kick off the season against one another on Sept. 9.

Thursday, the Tennessee Titans’ front office stayed busy and executed a series of roster moves.

The rundown:

• Three players were placed on injured reserve – running back Darrynton Evans, wide receiver Marcus Johnson and center Daniel Munyer. (Note: under NFL rules in place this year, players on injured reserve can return to the active roster after a minimum of three games).

• Two players were signed to the practice squad – quarterback Matt Barkley and defensive lineman Amani Bledsoe.

• One player was released from the active roster – tight end Luke Stocker.

• One player was returned to the active roster from the Reserve-COVID 19 list – linebacker/special teamer Nick Dzubnar.

Notes on Those Moves

Evans starting the season on injured reserve is a distinct disappointment. A third-round pick in 2020, he was injured at the start of his rookie season, inactive for the first two games and then spent eight weeks on injured reserve beginning in mid-October. It is still early, but he is building a reputation as an injury-prone player.

Johnson was one of the standouts of training camp, but he mentioned early in the preseason that injuries have been a consistent issue throughout his career. In five seasons, he never has played more than 11 games.

Bledsoe returns to the Titans after he appeared in 14 games for the Cincinnati Bengals last season. Undrafted in 2019, he spent that season on Tennessee’s practice squad.

Stocker’s release means Tommy Hudson, who spent all of last season on the practice squad, is the third tight end behind Anthony Firkser and Geoff Swaim. Hudson and Stocker are both primarily blockers, and two such players on the roster would be redundant.