In this episode, we will be taking a look at the several of the Titans that are in jeopardy of not being retained for the 2014 season. The Titans have major free agent decisions looming on the horizon, could these high priced veterans be on the block as cap casualties?
DE Kamerion Wimbley (5 years, $35 million, $13.5 guaranteed)
As much as I bought into the hype of having a former Nole on the team, Wimbley hasn't exactly met expectations that came with his contract. Some of that blame lies within the team as they have given him little to no rest due to the lack of depth behind him. He played well over 80% of the Titans' defensive snaps last year in a less than ideal position at end instead of outside linebacker where he is better suited. Wimbley is currently locked into a fierce battle with recent free agent acquisition Ropati Pitoitua for the starting spot opposite Derrick Morgan. There are several factors working on his behalf, however. The front office upgraded the depth at end by a considerable margin, allowing for a better rotation to give him more rest. Another factor is that he is due a total of $7.8 million in 2014 and if released, accounts for $5.4 million in dead money. At that going rate, the team is better off keeping him around and hoping less is more.
Michael Bennett, Seattle (currently on a one year prove it deal with the Seahawks)
Any of the stud Pac-12 pass rushers ( GM Ruston Webster comes from a Pac-12 background and has had recent success hitting on draft picks from that area)
S Michael Griffin (5 years, $35 million, $11.5 million)
The heavily maligned safety has been a MCM favorite (whipping boy, that is) for a number of years and could be on the chopping block should he continue his erratic form into 2013. Much has been made about Griffin's wildly inconsistent play so I won't delve into that here. As of right now, he stands as the only proven commodity at free safety on the team thanks to salary and lack of options (say what you will about the fearsome and beloved Bernard Pollard's force of personality but personality isn't covering anyone any time soon). Releasing him in 2014 will cost the team a whopping $13.4 million (cap hit: 8 million, dead money: 5.4 million). Perhaps the signings of Pollard and George Wilson will enable him to improve substantially by stabilizing the musical chairs at strong safety that plagued the Titans recently.
Markelle Martin? Alterraun Verner? Tommie Campbell? Khalid Wooten? a HS safety (very illegal but can't get any worse than Griffin, right)?
Dion Bailey USC
Kenny Ladler Vanderbilt
Ty Zimmerman Kansas State
Tre Boston North Carolina
Why no Haha Clinton-Dix? There's little chance of the team will spend a first round pick on a safety given the significant investment in Griffin and the potential for one in Verner.
So there you have it, Titans fans. Will we see these two Titans gone in 2014? Which one or will both be no longer Titans? Tune in to find out!