There's a fascinating battle brewing in the Titans' defensive backfield. A slew of new talent has been added -- some youthful, some experienced -- in hopes of bringing some stability back to the pass defense. However, all the new additions have created a couple of tough decisions for the front office.
Are the rookies safe?
Obviously rookie safety Kevin Byard has nothing to worry about. He's making this team and may end up starting soon rather than later. The intrigue comes with LeShaun Sims and Kalan Reed. Can they pull the upset and knock off Brice McCain or Antwan Blake?
Keep in mind that the target number is five for cornerbacks. That leaves at least Jason McCourty, Perrish Cox, Brice McCain, Antwan Blake and Cody Riggs ahead of the two rookie corners. Blidi Wreh-Wilson and B.W. Webb should also factor into the decision, although I think they both have uphill climbs ahead of them. In the end I think it comes down to Blake, Riggs, Sims and Reed battling for a couple of roster spots.
Addition by subtraction?
Both Coty Sensabaugh and Michael Griffin have moved on this offseason, leaving two holes to plug in the secondary. Jon Robinson was able to bring in two veterans in Brice McCain and Rashad Johnson, which may actually turn out to be an upgrade. Blidi Wreh-Wilson -- who has started several games over the past two seasons -- could be the next man out behind them. It was time for an infusion of talent in the secondary and Jon Robinson delivered just that.
Stability at safety?
Both safety positions appear to be set. Da'Norris Searcy is set to take over a leadership role in the Titans' back half while one of Kevin Byard or Rashad Johnson should man the free safety role. Both Johnson and Byard should see significant playing time. Versatile hybrid Marqueston Huff and Daimion Stafford both likely have spots on the final 53, but I wouldn't be shocked if one is cut to make room for one of the rookie cornerbacks.
There are still some unknowns in the secondary, but I think we can all agree that the Titans are in a better spot than they were last season. The Byard-Johnson-Searcy combination at safety seems like a big upgrade from the Griffin-Searcy-Stafford combination we saw last year. Brice McCain and Antwan Blake look better on paper than Blidi Wreh-Wilson and Coty Sensabaugh. If they can get anything out of LeShaun Sims or Kalan Reed this season, this could turn into a pretty good group.