The Tennessee Titans have released offensive tackle JaMarco Jones, the team announced on Thursday. Jones was the favorite to start at right tackle in place of the suspended Nicholas Petit-Frere. That means Jones’ release qualifies as a major surprise, but he hadn’t exactly endeared himself to the team in recent days.
Jones was banished to the sandpit during Tuesday’s practice for initiating a fight with superstar defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons. On Thursday, Jones was involved in a far more serious incident than a training camp scuffle. Jones was penalized for a dirty blind side block on second year linebacker Chance Campbell.
Tennessee’s defense responded to Jones’ hit by voicing their displeasure. Linebacker Azeez Al-Shaair was seen raising his voice with head coach Mike Vrabel. Vrabel condemned Jones’ actions following practice. Two incidents in three days means Jones ran out of rope with the Titans.
“You have to know how practice,” Vrabel said in relation to Jones’ antics. “We talk about being competitive and knowing where the line is. We can’t do anything that hurts the team,” Vrabel concluded.
Jones’ release sends a message.
The Titans will now move forward. At Thursday’s practice, Jones worked with the second-team offense. Veteran free-agent signing Chris Hubbard earned first-team reps, and now becomes the favorite to start against the New Orleans Saints in Week 1.
Jaelyn Duncan, John Ojukwu, Andrew Rupcich, and Zack Johnson are also on the roster. The Titans should hold an open competition. Ojukwu has been particularly impressive, but we’ll see if a first-year undrafted free agent can dethrone a veteran like Hubbard. There isn’t much help on the free agent market, so the Titans will probably find an in-house solution.
It’s an extremely concerning situation.