Titans turn the page from Kern
Brett Kern, a Titans institution for 13 years, was released Tuesday as part of the team's final roster cuts.
By the numbers: Kern, a three-time Pro Bowler, also led the team in punting average, total punts, punting yards and punts inside the 20-yard line.
- Kern played in the third-most games in Titans/Oilers franchise history.
Why it matters: With Kern's name scattered throughout the franchise's record books, it would take a herculean effort to unseat him for the punting job.
- That's apparently what rookie Ryan Stonehouse turned in. Kern said he knew he was in for a battle after he saw Stonehouse punt in May.
- "I knew then that it was going to be a grind," Kern told Sports Illustrated. "I've told him I've been in the league a long time, and I have seen about three or four people in my entire life hit a ball like he does."
- After his release, NFL insiders speculated Kern, 36, could be a good fit in Buffalo.
What he's saying: "I will never forget watching two running backs rush for 2K, holding a game winning kick in 0-degree weather, experiencing a playoff run that almost took us to the Super Bowl, going to 3 Pro Bowls with my family and teammates, jumping out of cardboard boxes in the hallway to scare the rookies, being able to lead bible studies and chapel or prayer before games, and probably my most favorite, hearing cheers of Nissan Stadium after pinning a team deep," Kern said in a goodbye note on Twitter.
Driving the news: Another noteworthy cut was second-year wide receiver Dez Fitzpatrick.
- Taken in the fourth round, Fitzpatrick never gained traction and fell down the depth chart after the addition of rookies Treylon Burks and Kyle Philips.
- At quarterback, rookie Malik Willis won the second-string job, beating out Logan Woodside, who was released.
The other side: While cutdown day is bad news for many players, it also leads to inspirational stories of underdogs making the team.
- That's the case with Julius Chestnut, an undrafted running back from tiny Sacred Heart. Chestnut defied the odds and made the Titans' 53-man roster.
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