This will be our first milestone for assessing Ruston Webster's additions to the Titans roster over last offseason. We will be looking at the player's individual performances and giving them a grade for their first quarter of the season. So, without further delay, here we go.
Delanie Walker (12 catches, 112 yards, 2 TDs)
Walker was a highly touted addition to this Titans team in the offseason, and after oiling up the joints following an injury that knocked him out until week 1, Walker put together some solid, if unspectacular, performances. So far he has done what was asked of him: provide a safety blanket for Locker and help this team move the chains in the run game. I can't fault him too much, he has taken advantage of his opportunities for the most part so far, and I think there is more yet to see from him.
Levitre was part of a trio of new interior players this year that was supposed to anchor this Titans offensive line and let them get back to being physical and active in the run game. So far the results have been hot and cold. While Levitre has flashed the skills and strength that the Titans loved (and paid for), he has yet to put together a truly dominant performance this year. That said, he has been lined up with some tough competition, but I still expect more from him. I predict this line will continue to gain some chemistry together and are feeling the effects of a preseason and training camp where they weren't really given the chance to do that because of injuries.
Moise Fokou – 25 tackles
What a surprise this guy has been. When he was signed it was viewed as a good move to get solid depth behind Colin McCarthy at MLB. Few expected he would outright win the job in camp and never look back. While Fokou has been bereft of splash plays, you can't ignore the steady presence he's brought to the interior of this defense.
Bernard Pollard - 29 tackles, 1 INT
While this move was viewed with more fanfare and rib-jabbing than really necessary, Pollard has backed up his talk so far. He has been the leader we expected, both on and off the field, and is inspiring similar physical play from his teammates (See; Griffin, Michael). He leads the team in tackles, and has been solid in coverage overall. I would argue he looks better in Tennessee's defensive scheme than he has on his previous career stops.
Jackie Battle – 29 carries, 88 yards, 1 TD
Battle was a preseason surprise that has turned out to be a pretty important addition. His physical running style won't win him many points in the stat department, but he has picked up some tough yards and won over some fans, myself included. He has had to do more than expected with Greene missing time early in the season with an injury.
Ropati Pitoitua – 11 tackles, 2 sacks
While it is a concern that Wimbley has had such a drastic reduction in playing time, you can't deny that Pitoitua has been a run stopping success so far this year, which has been a welcome addition to a team that was gashed by the run often last year. He had a breakout game against the Jets, and has been a starter quality player so far in his career that has been derailed by some unfortunate injuries. Ruston got a bargain with this one.
George Wilson – 7 tackles
Wilson has been another locker room leader this year. His solid play in 3 safety sets as well as on special teams has been a real asset for the Titans through 4 weeks. He may very well be the difference between the team being 3-1 and 2-2 with his onside recovery in Pittsburgh week 1. It is also an unheard of luxury in Nashville to have a safety of his quality waiting in the wings should anything happen.
Turner has struggled to match the play of the guy he replaced so far. While a lot of that can be chalked up to the afore-mentioned lack of chemistry, Turner has been abused regularly in his games this year so far. While I loved the move to bring him in for some quality depth, I abhor him as a starter. There is a reason a Rams team with a lackluster Offensive Line let him walk in the offseason.
Sammie Hill – 2 tackles
It is hard to grade Hill so far since he has seen the field so little due to injury. Early on, he looks to have been overpaid, but when he's back in the lineup he will be a key cog to possibly the deepest group of DTs in the league.
Shonn Greene - 4 carries, 18 yards
For much of the same reasons it is difficult to gauge Hill, Greene remains a question mark after sustaining injury early in the Titan's week 1 game. Through the preseason and the early goings of that game, however; Greene looked to be running with renewed purpose and power. I loved this addition, and I think the Titans will be a much better team with him in the lineup to spell CJ.
Through the first four weeks of the season, Webster's FA additions are looking solid. It will be worth watching how they play going forward, especially as guys like Hill and Greene work their way back into the lineup.