Rishard Matthews emerged as one of Marcus Mariota’s top targets in the receiver's first season with the Titans, setting career highs in catches, receiving yards and touchdowns with one game still to play.
But he wasn’t happy through the first several weeks of the season, when he was splitting starts and sharing playing time with Andre Johnson, a future Hall of Fame receiver who signed with the Titans on the eve of training camp.
“I was pissed. At the end of the day, I didn’t come here to sit on the bench or sit on the sideline,” Matthews told The Tennessean on Friday. “I didn’t come here to rotate with anybody. I signed here for a reason. So it definitely pissed me off.”
Matthews, who spent the previous four years with the Dolphins before signing a three-year, $15 million contract with the Titans as a free agent in March, leads the team with 831 receiving yards and eight touchdowns this season, and his 56 catches trail only Pro Bowl tight end Delanie Walker, who has 60. Matthews will have a chance to boost those numbers in the regular-season finale against the Texans on Sunday at Nissan Stadium.
Matthews did get off to a bit of a slow start this year and this was likely a reason. Matthews caught his first touchdown of the season in a blowout victory against the Dolphins. It began a stretch of seven scores in eight games. Johnson, meanwhile, didn’t have a catch in the three games after that victory against Miami and abruptly retired on Oct. 31, just eight games into his tenure with the Titans.
Friday, November 11, 2016, 7:00pm
Thursday, November 10, 2016, 6:38pm
Wednesday, November 9, 2016, 6:38pm
Walker was a question mark coming into this game with a groin issue. He'll suit up but obviously there's worry for owners he can tweak it, however he's a TE1 play. Murray, with the toe injury, was expected to play and will suit up.
Friday, November 4, 2016, 6:47pm
Titans TE Delanie Walker (groin, questionable) missed practice Friday after taking limited reps Thursday and is questionable for Week 9. He’ll be a game-time decision. The Titans play late on Sunday, which complicates matters. Owners should get a Plan B ready. Last time Walker missed a game, Jace Amaro was the big winner with three catches for 59 yards on four targets. He hasn’t caught a pass since that game. Lance Kendricks also plays late and is a pretty good fallback option for Walker owners.
Thursday, November 3, 2016, 6:12pm
Wednesday, October 26, 2016, 7:04pm
Friday, September 30, 2016, 8:26pm
Thursday, September 29, 2016, 6:45pm
Wednesday, September 28, 2016, 6:34pm
Friday, September 23, 2016, 6:21pm
Titans TE Delanie Walker (hamstring, questionable) missed practice Friday after taking limited reps Thursday and is questionable for Week 3. Walker hasn’t practiced his week, which doesn’t bode well. But he finished the game last week, so he may be able to play through the injury. The Titans play early on Sunday, but owners should have a Plan B ready to go.
Thursday, September 22, 2016, 6:07pm
Wednesday, September 21, 2016, 6:15pm
In his Pro Bowl season of 2015, Delanie Walker averaged more than six receptions per game en route to a career-high total of 94. Things didn’t get off to nearly as good a start Sunday, however, as Walker was held to three catches for 42 yards. In fact, up until the final Titans’ drive of the day, Walker had just one reception for 6 yards.
Titans coach Mike Mularkey said the Vikings did a good job defending Walker but acknowledged the team should have found a way to get Walker more involved early. Potential good news for the Titans is that Indianapolis tight ends Jack Doyle and Dwayne Allen combined for seven catches, 88 yards and three touchdowns against Detroit.
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