In our final installment on the offensive side of the football, today we look at the center position for the 2016 Tennessee Titans where the starting spot is settled and the backup is likely set as well.
The biggest question mark entering the season for general manager Jon Robinson and head coach Mike Mularkeyis still the offensive line. Despite two new additions that are thought to become starters along with three returning players, the experience of the backups is very limited and that is certainly a concern.
How will the depth chart at center look when the Titans kick off the regular season against Minnesota at Nissan Stadium? We examine here.
STARTER- Ben Jones: Signed away from division rival Houston in free-agency, Jones is the man in the middle for the Titans and he should stabilize that position along with bringing toughness and veteran experience to the line that must protect quarterback Marcus Mariota and give DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry room to run.
BACKUP- Brian Schwenke: The former starter at center for the Titans, Schwenke will now likely assume the backup role behind Jones. A veteran who can play both center and guard, Schwenke will allow for some flexibility up front and a soild starting replacement should Jones miss time.
Schwenke is entering the last year of his contract and likely won't be with the team after this season, and while we have him as the backup at this point, there certainly is a chance he could find himself on the outside come cut day.
PRACTICE SQUAD- Andy Gallik: Gallik enters his second season after being a draft pick of the Titans in 2015 and while he did start at center last season, he is still inexperienced and likely third on the depth chart at this time. A year on the practice squad should have him ready to step into the backup role in 2016 when Schwenke is likely gone.
Gallik has also worked at guard and could fill a vital role of a multi-position player, but his lack of experience has us placing him on the practice squad this season. There is a chance he could win the spot over Schwenke outright, but based on the current amount of inexperience on the offensive line as a whole, it's hard to see Robinson and Mularkey going with another inexperienced player.