The Tennessee Titans announced today they re-signed guard/center Chris Spencer to a one-year deal.
Spencer spent 2013 as the Titans’ primary backup interior offensive lineman. He had one start and played 120 total snaps on offense, 114 of them at center and 6 at left guard. As a veteran with experience playing every interior line position, he is a very good fit for that gameday active spot. That he re-signed with the Titans tells you (a) he feels comfortable in Nashville and (b) with the Titans’ interior starting trio pretty much set between Andy Levitre, Brian Schwenke, and Chance Warmack, nobody else around the league was too interested in him as a starter.
Then again, that’s generally the nature of backups-they’re backups because nobody wanted them as a starter. The fit between team, player, and role worked out well for both parties in 2013, and though Spencer just turned 32, that should still be true in 2014. Not a flashy signing, but a useful and perhaps even necessary one even if the Titans hope Spencer never actually takes any snaps on offense.
Before re-signing Spencer, the Titans had a couple other interior linemen visit, including Uche Nwaneri and Garrett Reynolds. I would characterize both of them as more guard types than center/guard backups. The Titans formerly would keep a more pure right guard backup (e.g., Deuce Lutui) in addition to a center/left guard backup, rather than the center/guard backup in Spencer and pure center in Schwenke and then Kevin Matthews they kept last year. I haven’t looked into Ken Whisenhunt’s offensive line backup history closely, but those visits could represent a slight change in that philosophy. Or maybe not.