Countdown to Kickoff: 67 Days
The countdown to kickoff continues.
The Tennessee Titans will open the 2020 regular season Sept. 14 at Denver. That is 67 days away. So, today we look at one way the number 67 figures into the team’s recent history.
The Tennessee Titans’ rich history of tight ends includes primary pass catchers like Frank Wycheck and Delanie Walker. There also have been traditional blockers like Craig Stevens.
Perhaps the best mix of all things that factor in the position was personified in Erron Kinney, who started 67 games for Tennessee over six seasons (2000-05). He was in the starting lineup for the final 39 games he played, including all 16 in 2003.
A third-round pick in 2000, Kinney ranks third among all Titans tight ends in starts since 1999. Only Stevens (72) and Wycheck (69) logged more.
Kinney was big enough (6-foot-5, 275 pounds) that he could stand up to the physical challenges that come when lined up next to a tackle on the line of scrimmage.
At the same time, he moved well enough that he was a factor in the passing game when needed. His career-high 55 receptions in 2005 make him one of five Tennessee tight ends during the Titans era to catch more than 50 passes in a season. Walker (five times), Wycheck (three times), Bo Scaife and Ben Troupe (once each) were the others.
Kinney’s first career touchdown reception was a game-winner at Pittsburgh on Sept. 24, 2000. An injured Steve McNair came off the bench to replace Neil O’Donnell, who had stared in McNair’s place, and drove the offense 64 yards in four plays, capped by an 18-yard completion to Kinney for the decisive score in a 23-20 Titans victory.
His 178 receptions are fourth among Titans tight ends since the start of the 1999 season, but his 9.8 yards-per-catch average is slightly better than that of Wycheck (9.6) and Scaife (9.5).