Jackie Battle adds fullback to his job description

AP

The hundreds of undrafted rookie free agents trying to make it in the NFL could learn something from Titans tailback Jackie Battle.

Undrafted seven years ago and released three different times during his career, Battle remains on an NFL roster at age 30, and he’s four-fifths of the way toward playing 100 regular season games.

As Jim Wyatt of the Nashville Tennessean pointed out in a story published Wednesday, Battle has taken reps at running back and fullback this offseason.

“I just pick a hole and hit the first body that’s in there,” the 6-foot-2, 240-pound Battle said of being a blocking back, according to the Tennessean. “There will a lot more contact, more collisions, but that’s the kind of back I am. I have been a physical back throughout my career.”

Battle appeared in all 16 games for the Titans a season ago, carrying 36 times for 142 yards and catching four passes for 36 yards. It’s possible he could see a little more work this season as Tennessee tries to replace Chris Johnson, but rookie Bishop Sankey and veteran Shonn Greene figure to get the majority of snaps at tailback, especially if Greene can overcome knee issues. Dexter McCluster could also get some carries, too.

Still, Battle’s versatility probably helps his case to grab a spot on the depth chart. He’s a willing special teams player, as evidenced by his 10 tackles a season ago. And if he’s a viable fullback, he will be all the more valuable.

The more jobs a backup player can do, the better. If it hasn’t been made clear already, the newest group of undrafted free agents will know this soon enough.

12 responses to “Jackie Battle adds fullback to his job description

  1. Grew up with Jackie. Hard worker, selfless, good player and even better person.

    From the 96′ Dolphins peewee team, to Humble High School, to the UH Cougars, finishing with a long and prosperous career in the NFL – Livin’ the dream Homie. Keep doing your thing.

  2. I would personally prefer the team to keep Colin Mooney over Battle at FB. Mooney rated as one of the best FBs at run-blocking. I get that Whisenhunt won’t use a FB in the traditional sense very often, but I’d prefer to have a very good run-blocking specialist than a jack-of-all-trades converted RB.

  3. I absolutely LOVED Jackie Battle when he was here in San Diego. I would have been fine with cutting Ryan Matthews amd keeping Jackie, to be honest with you. I always felt like he would have been a killer full-time FB, but he was also a very talented HB. Wish nothing but the very best for thia guy.

  4. He was a great special teams player for us last year and ran well when he got the ball. He would be a HUGE upgrade over Mooney or Johnson in Whiz’s system. I hope he ends up with the job after camp because I would hate see him cut as the fifth RB. #TitanUp

  5. Bishop Sankey is going to be a beast for the Titans. He will quickly make Titan fans forget about Johnson. Sankey has moves, power, speed and best of all the kid can pick up the blitz.

    You guys are going to love him.

  6. MY guy! I loved him in 2007 as a Chief when he scored a TD v. DET in a battle of two of the most pitiful teams in years. He hit the hole and ran over a DET LB and on TV it sounded like a cannon going off. I ran that back on the DVR about 10 times. It was awesome! Keep it up Jackie. You ROCK!

  7. I always enjoy the summer but September can’t come soon enough. These news fillers are brutal. Battle will most likely win a spot on the roster as a backup bruising RB and a Special Teams Ace, but DEFINITELY not as the starting FB. Colin Mooney was rated by PFF (professionals who watch game tape to judge a players technique) as one of the best run-blockers last season with the second best grade. Cutting him would be a big mistake for a promising rookie RB who could use all the help he can get acclimating to the NFL. Whisenhunt has preached versatility through cross-training just in case a key started goes down or just to be unpredictable I might think. Battle is just adding more to his arsenal to have an even better shot at making the 53. Also if you think Mooney isn’t a valuable weapon on offense, think again. Our rushing attack can be lethal especially if the o line plays like a top ten unit once again.

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