NASHVILLE – Ben Jones is making progress. So is Jeffery Simmons.
The Tennessee Titans center was a limited participant in Wednesday’s practice, according to the team’s official injury report, with a concussion.
That means that Jones has started to make his way through the steps of the NFL’s official concussion protocol. He is somewhere in the middle of the five-stage process, of which the third stage football-specific exercise and the fourth is non-contact football drills. He will be evaluated at each stage until neurological tests return to previously established baseline levels.
The only other Titans player listed as a limited participant Simmons. It was the first time the Pro Bowl defensive lineman did anything in practice since he injured an ankle on Oct. 23 against Indianapolis. Despite the extended rehab period, he appeared in three of four games since. The only one he missed was Nov. 13 against Denver, a week after he reaggravated the injury in a loss at Kansas City.
Four players did not practice, and one was running back Derrick Henry, whose absence was “not injury related.” That is the fewest non-participants Tennessee has had since its Week 7 matchup with the Colts.
Jones missed last Thursday’s victory over the Green Bay Packers because of the injury. It was just the second time in his career that an injury kept him out of action. The first was in 2019, when a concussion also kept him out for one game.
In his absence, left guard Aaron Brewer started at center and Dillon Radunz filled in for Brewer.
“Very proud of and excited for (Brewer) and how he handled that situation – playing center on a short week without any full-speed reps in practice,” offensive coordinator Todd Downing said. “He really relied on some of the training he had in training camp and years past. Just very proud of him.”
There is a chance he won’t need to do it again.
The complete Titans-Bengals injury report for Wednesday:
Did not practice: OLB Denico Autry (knee), K Randy Bullock (right calf), CB Kristian Fulton (hamstring) and running back Derrick Henry (not injury related). Limited practice: C Ben Jones (concussion) and DL Jeffery Simmons (ankle). Full participation: OLB Bud Dupree (hip), S Amani Hooker (shoulder), DB Elijah Molden (groin) and QB Ryan Tannehill (ankle).
Did not practice: T La’el Collins (not injury related), DE Trey Hendrickson (illness), RB Joe Mixon (concussion) and DT Jay Tufele (illness). Limited participation: LB Joe Bache (knee), WR Ja’Marr Chase (hip), RB Chris Evans (knee), S Dax Hill (shoulder), DT DJ Reader (ankle) and DT Josh Tupou.