The Tennessee Titans still do not know for certain who their quarterback will be during the 2012 season.
They got a clearer picture of who will be blocking for the quarterback, though, on Thursday when veteran guard Steve Hutchinson agreed to a three-year contract, according to reports.
“I have always liked Steve as a player and respected how he has played,” coach Mike Munchak said in a statement announcing the move. “I have evaluated hundreds of players coming out of college in my time as a coach and he may have been the finest college guard I have watched. I still see him [on tape] playing at a high level, even in his 11th NFL season.
"He brings experience and success to our line and into the locker room. He is just an all-around good football player and we are excited to have him.”
Hutchinson is a seven-time Pro Bowler with Seattle and Minnesota (his last appearance was 2009). The 34-year-old was a teammate of current Titans quarterback Matt Hasselbeck with the Seahawks and also, according to some, has developed a friendship with prospective signal caller Peyton Manning through shared Pro Bowl appearances.
“Steve is a really talented player who has had a great deal of success in this league,” general manager Ruston Webster said. “I like his leadership and his toughness and he will obviously add to the overall talent of the group upfront.”
The move suggests that Jake Scott, a free agent addition in 2008 who started at right guard in every game over the last four season, will not be re-signed. Scott currently is a free agent in his own right.
At 6-foot-5, 315 pounds, Hutchinson offers a little more of bulk than Scott (6-foot-5, 295 pounds) and has a better reputation as a run blocker. He was part of Seattle’s line in 2005 when Shaun Alexander ran for a league-high 1,880 yards and blocked for Minnesota in 2008 when Adrian Peterson led the league with 1,760 yards.
He became available when the Vikings released him on Sunday.
"Awesome to have Steve Hutchinson join the O- Line," left tackle Michael Roos wrote on his Twitter account shortly after the move was announced.