2013 Cap hit for all RBs on roster ($12.63m) – 11.81% of team spend Players under contract: Chris Johnson (5’11”, 191) – 27 years old 2013 Cap Number - $12m ($10m salary + $2m SB pro-rata) – note salary is guaranteed if he is on the roster day 5 of new league year (mid-March) 2014 Cap Number – $10m ($8m salary + $2m SB pro-rata) 2015 Cap Number – $10m ($8m salary + $2m SB pro-rata) Jamie Harper (5’11”, 233) – 24 years old 2013 Cap Number - $0.63m ($0.55m salary + $0.08m SB pro-rata) 2014 Cap Number – $0.73m ($0.65m salary + $0.08m SB pro-rata) Expired Contracts Darius Reynaud Javon Ringer Darren Evans 3 burning questions 1. Is it too early to cut ties with CJ? I don’t think there is any doubt he isn’t worth the salary he is getting, but he showed enough this season to be a contributor to our offense and we certainly don’t have a better option on the roster today. 2. Is the Jamie Harper experiment over? Outside of Chris Henry, I can’t recall when I have been less impressed with a Running Back than when Jamie Harper takes the field. The Titans definitely need a decent complement to CJ, but Harper has had 2 seasons and has failed abysmaly at every opportunity. 3. Did Reynaud earn himself another contract? 2 punt returns for TDs against the Jags surely helped his chances, and he didn’t lose a fumble all season. That said, as a jack of all trades, he didn’t really shine. He only caught 5 passes all season and averaged a measly 2.1yds per carry. At 28 years old, I can’t say he is a priority. Free Agency: Some really good options (particularly between the tackles runners) and I expect us to be a player. Steven Jackson (Player Option) Chris Ivory (RFA) Reggie Bush Rashard Mendenhall Cedric Benson Shonn Greene Bernard Scott Peyton Hillis Brandon Jacobs Rashad Jennings La'Rod Stephens-Howling Cedric Peerman Brian Leonard Mike Goodson Tashard Choice Potential Cap Casualties: Michael Turner Willis McGahee DeAngelo Williams Potential Draft Targets: I could see us targeting a RB as early as round 3, and fully expect us to draft at least one, depending on how Free Agency pans out. Montee Ball, Wisconsin Le’Veon Bell, Michigan State Stepfan Taylor, Stanford Rex Burkhead, Nebraska Joseph Randle, Oklahoma State Wildcards: Marcus Lattimore, South Carolina Knile Davis, Arkansas Summary If 2012 proved anything, it proved that we need a better 2nd option to CJ than what we have. In developing a young QB, we can’t be putting him in 2nd and 3rd and long plays so often, so we need the running game to be much more consistent than it was this year. I know that is not all on the RBs, but this unit definitely needs an upgrade behind CJ. Our situation with CJ is also a little unclear. He holds zero trade value with the monster contract he has, so at some point the team has to make a decision on whether or not they are going to let him play out his contract, or cut ties. My take I think it would be a very ballsy move to cut CJ before his salary becomes guaranteed and I don’t see it happening. With the stacked free agent group, I think we will sign a veteran RB to back him up (Rashad Jennings type) and draft another RB as well. I would love the Titans to get Ivory from the Saints, but he's likely to receive a high tender and I don't see us paying the compensation. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Titans gambled on Davis or Lattimore in the middle rounds of the draft if they secure a competent back-up in free agency. UPDATE TWO WEEKS OUT FROM DRAFT Shonn Greene is a risk as a signing, but at times in New York, he flashed the ability to be an excellent between the tackles runner. He at least gives the Titans the threat of a power running game on short yardage plays and could help open up the play-action game. Harper is clearly on borrowed time. Reynaud was re-signed with a $300k signing bonus, so it is unlikely he will be let go. I think the draft strategy at RB is more about finding a viable replacement for CJ if they want to cut him loose next season. In my mind, that makes Davis and Lattimore prime candidates through the draft, and I wouldn't be surprised if the Titans targeted one of these two in round 4 or 5.