Derrick Henry accepts his role, but admits it was an adjustment

Derrick Henry
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After being a workhorse at Alabama, Derrick Henry took a backseat to DeMarco Murray last season as a rookie. It was an adjustment.

It was different, coming off the year that I had in college, coming in and being the second guy,” Henry said, via Jim Wyatt of the team website. “But it was a growth year, an experience year, and it helped me learn a lot and prepared me this year to get better.”

While Murray rushed for 1,287 yards, Henry rushed for 490 yards and five touchdowns on 110 carries. Henry also caught 13 passes for 137 yards.

Henry has added muscle during the offseason.

“I am just trying to get better, and help the team,” Henry said. “Even when I am not the starter, I feel like the starter. You go out here in training camp and try and make plays.

“[My mindset] is to be better than last year in all aspects of my game. I was training, working out hard [this offseason]. I just want to try and do everything I can do to be better than I was last year, from running to catching to blocking.”

The Titans, though, have made it clear to Henry his role: He will continue to backup Murray.

“I think he knows his role here,” coach Mike Mularkey said. “He knows we want to get him the football when we can; he understands his role. That’s why he practices the way he practices, that’s why he meets the way he meets. He gets it; he’s a team player. If you don’t practice like you’re a starter, you’re going to have a problem when you line up on Sunday, whether it’s starting a game, or coming in on a game, you better practice like you’re a starter.”