The Titans added (what we thought was) plenty of talent in the past offseason. Now that, amazingly, four weeks of the season is already in the books, it's time to make our first quarter evaluations on these additions. Like it or not, I factor the contracts given to each player in my evaluations. Also, for the sake of these evals, I'm only considering the additions made during the offseason, training camp, or pre-season.
Michael Oher, RT
The Titans spent some relatively big money on the former Baltimore offensive lineman, who had his fair share of struggles in his former home. He has been solid, if unspectacular so far, with a few big mistakes to his discredit. The Titans pulled him for Taylor Lewan in the firestorm of last weekend's loss to the Indianapolis Colts. I am always one for adding to your offensive line depth, but signing Oher and drafting Lewan in the 1st round sends mixed signals, unless they know something about Michael Roos that we don't.
Wesley Woodyard, ILB
Woodyard was an intriguing addition to a linebacking corps lacking sure tacklers. He has been excellent so far, and like many of the other FA additions, his contract was put together with savvy incentives, and he looks to be a good value pickup thus far. Woodyard is a rangy linebacker, and has showed he can play against both run and pass. However, he has had some notable misses as well, (two big ones against the Colts last weekend) and the linebackers around him have not been overly impressive week to week. Still, he's been the best that the Titans have had through the early goings of the 2014 season.
Dexter McCluster, RB
It was delved into some yesterday, but McCluster's usage so far in Tennessee has been sparse at best. He was brought in to be a "movable chess piece"-type player, who could cause match-up difficulties. While he has been decent with the ball in his hands, it's not happening enough. Whether he can get the blame for that or it is on the coaches is yet to be decided, but he's been an underwhelming add so far, especially considered the hype.
Shaun Phillips, OLB
Phillips is a veteran who knows how to rush the passer. The Titans weren't expecting him to be an every down guy, but he hasn't been the answer to the Titans pass rushing productivity in the season's first quarter. Tennessee needs to see more out of their linebackers in general, but Phillips needs to step up as a seasoned guy and a leader.
Charlie Whitehurst, QB
Last game provided our only real look at Charlie Whitehurst, and though it was an ugly game, he was serviceable. That's about the maximum you can expect for a guy who's had limited reps and is a career backup, but at least he looked like a quarterback. His receivers let him down in a big way last weekend as well. I wasn't a fan of signing him and letting Fitzpatrick go, but hey, what's done is done.
Al Woods, NT
Woods hasn't seen the field too much behind Sammie Hill, and I wasn't a fan of the money spent on a guy with so little production to his name. It's tough to evaluate a young player like him this early into a signing without tape to watch, so I'll leave my opinion right where it was when I first got wind of the acquisition.
Ryan Succop, K
Succop was a last minute add, and a needed one at that. The Titans kicker situation looked bleak heading into the regular season, and the coaching staff made the move to grab the recently-cut Chiefs kicker. Succop has been solid so far, and despite a couple of misses against Cincinnati, has given me little reason to doubt that this was a superb signing.
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