What they don’t know will help them.
At least that’s what Tennessee Titans coaches believe when it comes to the competition at quarterback and other positions.
When Matt Hasselbeck and Jake Locker took to the field Saturday for the first full day of training camp, for example, neither one knew when he was going to be involved in drills. As long as the issue of who will be the starter remains unresolved, they will continue in that fashion.
“We think that’s the best way to do it, for them to compete that way, so … they’re not looking at the script beforehand knowing what plays you’re going to be getting and knowing who you’re going to be working with,” coach Mike Munchak said. “I think … that way the coaches make decisions on what they want to see them doing, who they want to see them with.
“We’re doing it with the quarterback position. We’re doing it with the offensive line and we’ll be doing it with some defensive positions throughout camp trying to find the right mixture of people.”
At the start of seven-on-seven passing drills it was Locker who was up first with the starters. His first throw resulted in an interception by safety Michel Griffin, which Munchak said was the result of an overaggressive approach by the 2011 first-round pick.
“Get the bad ones out of the way early,” Locker joked.
Hasselbeck was first one up in the first round of team (11-on-11) drills. And so it went.
“Even within a series, there may be a 16-play period that we’re having and one of the quarterbacks will start with the first group on the first four and then the second quarterback goes,” Munchak said. “Then when the first group comes back the [second] quarterback will be in there.
“We feel this is the best way to run practices right now.”
• The situation at wide receiver was bad enough at the start and – for a moment – looked to get a little worse.
Nate Washington stayed on the ground after a play roughly an hour and a half into the two-hour session. He clutched at his back as trainers came to tend to him.
Washington ultimately got back in the action and afterward said he experienced a cramp.
The Titans were without Kenny Britt (knee injury) and first-round draft pick Kendall Wright (contract negotiations) for the entire workout. Free agent rookie Devin Aguilar (hamstring injury) also was out but was not expected to miss much time.
• Munchak on the first day of practice: “It was a good solid start for us. We obviously know we have a lot of work ahead but they’re looking forward to it.
“… You just kind of want to see where everyone’s at, what kind of shape we’re in when we come back. You try to ease into it somewhat when you’re out here. You don’t want to overdo it.
“… The scripts were so basic a year ago. … Today already [there were] a lot of ‘check’ plays, a lot of run-check-pass, pass-check-pass, shifts, motions. You’re already doing a lot of those things from Day One. Those are the things you have to work on from Day One if you want to be good at it.”