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Titans activate K Ryan Succop and S Joshua Kalu off injured reserve ahead of matchup with Panthers

Special teams help is on the way.

Washington Redskins v Tennessee Titans Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

The Titans are getting a couple boost to their special teams units as they get ready for a critical matchup with the Panthers on Sunday. Kicker Ryan Succop and safety/cornerback/special teams ace Joshua Kalu have been activated off of injured reserve and placed on the 53-man roster.

Fill in kicker Cody Parkey and backup cornerback Tye Smith were released to make room for Succop and Kalu.

The Titans have had to piece together their kicking duties this season after Succop found a “lack of pop” in his kicking leg following recovery from an offseason knee injury. Cairo Santos was initially signed, but after a disastrous 0 for 4 performance against the Bills, he was released and replaced with Parkey. Parkey’s three games with the team saw him hit 5 of 6 extra points and 3 of 3 field goal attempts.

Succop’s return should bring stability to the kicking duties in Tennessee. He has hit at least 83.3% of his field goal attempts in each of his five seasons with the Titans.

Kalu is back as well after suffering an injury late in the preseason. The Titans like him as a versatile backup, capable of playing both safety and corner while also acting as a key member of the special teams units.

The Titans activating Succop and Kalu means that they have used up their two “IR returns” for the season. Given that they didn’t have any other players on IR who were eligible to return — guys like D’Andre Walker and Cameron Batson who went on IR prior to the initial 53-man roster are not eligible — and the IR rules dictate a minimum of 8 weeks before a return, there was no one else they could have used these activation exemptions on for 2019 anyway.

A couple other injury related notes from the Titans coming down on Saturday... special teams ace Chris Milton has been downgraded to OUT for Sunday’s game and right tackle Jack Conklin has been added to the injury report with an illness and is listed as questionable.

If Conklin can’t go, Dennis Kelly would get his fifth start of the season (first at right tackle).