This week will be the first real day of evaluation when it comes to the Tennessee Titans rookies.
That’s because it is the first time they will be sprinkled in among the veterans to see exactly where they stand and how far they must go to contribute.
The rookies actually got their first taste of working with the veterans on Tuesday, but Thursday and Friday will be the first combined sessions with media availability.
First-round pick Chris Johnson will have the most eyes on him, as onlookers will be interested in seeing just how his 4.24 speed translates with the more experienced players, and what sorts of ways the Titans will devise to utilize his unique skills.
Johnson is used to being a jack-of-all-trades; he was used that way at East Carolina, where racked up more than 2,900 all-purpose yards as a senior for the Pirates.
“At East Carolina, I was their primary running back, and as the season went on, they started finding different ways to use me, like going out as a wide receiver or running the screen or in the slot and running the bubble screen and different stuff just to get the ball in my hand,” Johnson said during rookie orientation.
Needless to say, offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger should enjoy testing out his newest offensive toy.
“He has good hands and he has good speed obviously. We’ll know better when we get a bunch of people around him,” Heimerdinger said. “He gives you some things to think about. We’ll just see how much he can handle as he goes, but he gives you some options you can think about.”
It is those options the Titans hope to take full advantage of with Johnson.
“We drafted him because he can change the complexion off our offense,” Titans coach Jeff Fisher said.