NASHVILLE – And so it begins.
The NFL roster limit dropped to 85 on Tuesday. To comply, the Tennessee Titans released five players, including two veterans who had hoped to re-start their careers after seeing little to no action last season.
Here is a look at who got cut and why:
• Josh Malone, WR: The local product who starred the University of Tennessee was good but did not stand out in any way. He is not as fast as a guy like Racy McMath. He is not shifty like rookie Kyle Philips. Malone (pictured) does not have the power of first-round pick Treylon Burks or the proven production of Robert Woods. He was a fourth-round pick by the Cincinnati Bengals in 2017 but has just 11 career receptions. Now, he will have plenty of time to see if someone else gives him a chance.
• Jordan Wilkins, RB: A fifth-round pick by Indianapolis in 2018, Wilkins was an important role player with the Colts for three seasons before he fell out of favor with them. Derrick Henry is healthy. Fourth-round pick Hassan Haskins figures prominently into the long-term plans, and undrafted rookie Julius Chestnut looks like a guy who is worth developing. Wilkins would have been a nice option if something had gone wrong with any of those three, but that wasn’t the case.
• Carson Green, OL: The Titans added him off waivers in early June, which meant that he had one week of OTAs and the mandatory minicamp to familiarize himself with things. There were seven tackles on the roster. Green, an undrafted free agent in 2021, failed make himself a factor in the battle to be the starting right tackle, which remains between Dillon Radunz and Nicholas Petit-Frere, high picks in the last two drafts. So, he is out of work.
• Haskell Garrett, DL: An intriguing rookie free agent out of Ohio State, Garrett is a victim of an unusually deep group of veterans on the defensive line. Offseason additions Da’Shawn Hand, DeMarcus Walker and Kevin Strong currently back up a group of returners led by Jeffery Simmons and Denico Autry. Garrett might be an NFL player, but there was no way for him to show it right now among that bunch.
• Deante Burton, DB: He was signed on Saturday, when the team was dealing with injury issues at cornerback. Kristian Fulton, Roger McCreary and Elijah Molden all missed practice time in recent days but were involved and at full speed on Monday. Chris Jackson remains out of action, but coaches have made it clear that they want to see the starters at that spot play some in the preseason. An extra body, particularly one who did not have time to establish himself, simply is not necessary going forward.