Patrick Ramsey knew when he signed with the Tennessee Titans that he was coming in as the No. 3 quarterback behind Kerry Collins and Vince Young.
That doesn’t me he intends to stay in that spot, though.
Ramsey, who backed up Jay Cutler in Denver last year, signed a one-year free agent deal in Tennessee shortly after last year’s third-stringer Chris Simms wound up with the Broncos in Ramsey’s old spot in Denver as the No. 2 quarterback.
With Simms, there was apparently the understanding that if he came back to Tennessee, he would get a legitimate chance to vie for the second spot behind Collins.
So will Ramsey, who played for Titans offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger in 2007, get the same chance to compete with Young for the right to be Collins’ primary backup?
“That’s the situation I’m faced with,” Ramsey said of being third on the depth chart currently. “Honestly, what I intend to do is come in here and play as well as I can and let that take care of itself.
“They just said come in and the best players are going to be moved up. Obviously, Kerry is the starter, and I’m going to be competing for the second job.”
Ramsey is fine with just getting the opportunity to compete and has been in that situation before, having backed up with the Washington Redskins and New York Jets prior to his stint in Denver.
“It helps prepare me for competition, and I’ve been in several competitions and it’s prepared me for whatever situation I’m faced with during the season, whether it be that I am the second guy and I have an opportunity to start a game,” Ramsey said. “I’ve done that before, or if I’m the backup and Kerry is playing every single game, I’m there to support him in every single way and make his job easier for him.”
So what sort of competition will there be behind Collins in training camp? Coach Jeff Fisher has said Collins is first, Young is second and Ramsey third for now, and reiterated that during last week’s OTA sessions.
Still, as with all positions, Fisher said competition can be created based on performance.
“We’re going to play the best players, and we’re going to have the best players in the backup roles,” Fisher said. “It’s still early. We’re still in OTAs. I expect both of them to play well in preseason.”
Heimerdinger echoed that sentiment, when asked about Ramsey’s possibilities of getting beyond being the third stringer.
“I think there’s always competition. Anytime you have three people in a spot or four people in a spot, there’s always competition,” Heimerdinger said. “I would think that you always want to play the best football players, because that gives you the best chance to win.”
Heimerdinger likes what he has seen thus far from Ramsey’s work in OTAs, even though sometimes Ramsey’s performance is difficult to evaluate from working now with so many rookies and backup players who are still learning the offensive system.
“Pat’s doing a really good job. Scheme-wise, he knows what we’re doing. It’s hard on Pat, because a lot of times, he’s throwing to three or four guys who are trying to figure out if they’re even lined up right, much less run the right routes,” Heimerdinger said.
“Pat’s doing some good things and like I told Pat, ‘Don’t get frustrated if the run the wrong routes. I want to see the ball going in the right spot. I want to see your steps right, and your progressions right, and he’s done a good job with that.”