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The Titans released JaMarco Jones: What Now?

Analyzing the fallout of JaMarco Jones’ release

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NFL: Tennessee Titans Training Camp The Tennessean-USA TODAY NETWORK

The Tennessee Titans released offensive linemen JaMarco Jones on Thursday afternoon. The move was announced just hours after Jones threw a dirty blindside block at second year linebacker Chance Campbell. Head coach Mike Vrabel commented on Jones’ release during Friday’s presser.

“We all have a responsibility to the team,” Vrabel said. “My job is to protect the team. The players’ job is to find their way onto the team. We’re always going to hold the team in high regard. We need to make sure that how we carry ourselves is in the best interest of the team,” Vrabel concluded.

It’s clear that Jones was released for his failure to protect a teammate. Jones’ blindside block could have caused Campbell to suffer a serious knee injury. It’s worth acknowledging Jones was also banished to the sandpit during Tuesday’s practice for initiating a fight with superstar defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons.

The Titans are now tasked with moving onto their third-choice right tackle to begin the season after Nicholas Petit-Frere was suspended six games for violating the league’s gambling policy. Veteran free-agent signing Chris Hubbard becomes the in-house favorite to start against the New Orleans Saints in Week 1. Vrabel commented on Hubbard’s progression on Friday.

“Chris has been great,” Vrabel said. “He’s a professional. He’s been attentive. He’s made mistakes, just like everybody else. It seems like he’s put a lot of work into figuring out what we want to do [offensively]. Things will start to calm down [for him] going forward. Hopefully there will be some more improvement. I’ve liked everything I’ve seen from him as far as his attitude and professionalism.”

A 32-year-old, 11-year veteran, Hubbard signed with the Titans following a successful workout in late July. Hubbard worked out for the Titans alongside George Fant, who Titans fans were clamoring for the organization to sign. Instead, the Titans balked at Fant’s asking price, who ended up signing a one-year deal worth up to a reasonable $4 million with their AFC South rival Houston Texans. I wonder if the Titans regret not signing Fant. They had enough cap space to do so.

Hubbard played just 39 offensive snaps for the Cleveland Browns via a reserve role last season. He last saw extended action for the Browns in 2020, playing 290 snaps. The majority of those occurred at right guard (224), with Hubbard earning an impressive pass-blocking grade of 78.3 from Pro Football Focus.

Hubbard played 846 snaps at right tackle in 2019. The results weren’t particularly encouraging. Pro Football Focus credited Hubbard with allowing 6.0 sacks and 38 pressures en route to a pass-blocking grade of 61.9. Hubbard also fared poorly as a run blocker (38.5 run blocking grade). That marked the end of Hubbard’s three-year run as the Browns’ starting right tackle, where his results were mostly positive in pass protection.

Hubbard will face competition throughout the remainder of camp from Jaelyn Duncan, John Ojukwu, and Andrew Rupcich. All three players have earned praise from Vrabel on occasion. Duncan and Ojukwu are running with the second-and-third-team offense, but could earn opportunities with the starters.

Vrabel also said the Titans will likely bring in free-agent tackles for a workout. Analyzing the market leaves plenty to be desired, however. Perhaps Ja’Wuan James and/or Dalton Risner will emerge as options.