Titans who may not be back in 2010

There should be a poll up about the decision today naming VY as the starter. This post would’ve been written earlier but for technical difficulties-I’m not trying to ignore the latest news.

Two months ago, looking ahead, the question that would have seemed to be facing the Titans in the 2010 offseason would be whether or not the Titans would have a realistic shot at seriously competing for a Super Bowl berth in 2010 and which veterans should be retained for another year. As we look toward Week 8 of the 2009 season, though, it’s depressingly apparent that that open window mostly closed in the recent offseason.

With the window mostly shut, the decision as to which players might be retained changed a little. So, which Titans could be looking at playing elsewhere in 2010?

Naturally, in the world of NFL contracts, it’s never simple. The owners have voted to opt out of the current Collective Bargaining Agreement (“CBA”), which means 2010 will have some unusual rules. This has a number of interesting implications, but there’s one in particular that matters here. And, that one is that players will need 6 years of service to become unrestricted free agents instead of 4 years; players with 4 and 5 years of service will instead be restricted free agents, like LenDale White was this season. So, you’ll see two groups of players here. The first are veterans with 6+ years of service, who will be eligible for unrestricted free agency regardless of what happens. The second are those 4 and 5 year guys, who are in a little bit of limbo right now.

6+ Year Veterans
G/C Eugene Amano
LS/LB Ken Amato
LB Keith Bulluck
TE Alge Crumpler
CB Nick Harper
CB Rod Hood
S Kevin Kaesviharn
DE Jevon Kearse
C Kevin Mawae
S Donnie Nickey
DE Kyle Vanden Bosch

4-5 Year Veterans
DE Dave Ball
DT Tony Brown
TE Bo Scaife
LB Stephen Tulloch
DT Kevin Vickerson
RB LenDale White

Note: I believe both Ball and Brown are in their 5th year and thus would be RFA with no new CBA deal, but could be wrong.

If you’re a fan of one of the guys on these lists, particularly the list of guys with 6+ years, pay close attention to his play over the last 10 games because this could well be his last year in the two-tone blue. As we go forward, I should have mini-profiles of the more memorable among the guys who may not be back next year, along with a list of players who may be playing to stay on the roster in 2010.

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