TAMPA, Fla. – The Tennessee Titans took the field for their second of two joint practices with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday morning.

Here’s a look at the five biggest things that stood out.

1. AB Loses His Cool

Buccaneers wide receiver Antonio Brown lost his cool during one-on-one drills on Thursday, chirping at and ultimately punching Titans DB Chris Jackson.

Jackson matched up with Brown on a streak route to the end zone. He broke up QB Tom Brady’s pass to Brown, but the nearby official threw a flag for holding since Jackson had been pretty aggressively tugging on Brown’s jersey.

Moments later, Brown approached Jackson and started chirping at the young defensive back. Brown then ripped Jackson’s helmet off and threw a punch that hit Jackson in the chin.

The Buccaneers then booted Brown out of practice. He returned around 15 minutes later after taking some time to cool down inside the building.

2. Tempers Flare All Around


Brown wasn’t the only player to get heated during Thursday’s practice, though.

Three other skirmishes broke out throughout the 90-minute affair, involving a list of players that included Titans RB Jeremy McNichols, WR Fred Brown and LB Nick Dzubnar.

Buccaneers LB Devin White and safety Mike Edwards also got in on the action.

It was a feisty and emotional practice from start to finish.

3. Monty Rice Returns

Titans LB Monty Rice fully dressed for Thursday’s practice and participated during the individual period, certainly a welcome sign for the Titans.

Rice left Wednesday’s practice with Tampa Bay early after appearing to suffer an injury. Rice rode a cart into the building, which led to some worry that he could miss significant time with a severe ailment.

Those fears were laid to rest on Thursday, though, as Rice looked great during practice. He ran drills that required violent, explosive movement, proving that he’s likely in no danger of not being ready for the regular season.

It remains to be seen, though, whether he will suit up for the Titans’ preseason game against the Buccaneers on Thursday.

4. Missing Offensive Players Galore

Tennessee practiced for the second day in a row without a handful of key offensive players on Thursday.

Receivers Julio Jones, A.J. Brown and Marcus Johnson sat out in addition to offensive linemen Ben Jones and Nate Davis.

Those absences left QB Ryan Tannehill with slim pickings in the passing game. Most of his attempts when in the direction of back-of-the-roster players like McNichols and WR Nick Westbrook-Ikhine.

As a result, the Titans’ offense struggled against Tampa Bay’s talented defense. Tannehill threw multiple interceptions as his receivers struggled to get open, especially against press coverage.

The effort led to head coach Mike Vrabel declaring that Thursday’s practice “sucked.”

“From what I saw, we didn’t do well offensively,” Vrabel added. “I don’t think we competed like we did yesterday.”

5. Brady Fires Back

After struggling during Wednesday’s practice, QB Tom Brady looked more like himself on Thursday.

He and the rest of the Buccaneers’ offense were on fire all day. Brown, WR Mike Evans, WR Chris Godwin and TE Rob Gronkowski took turns carving up Tennessee’s defense.

This wasn’t a terribly surprising development.

Brady declared that Tampa Bay needed to “be much more on top of things tomorrow” following Wednesday’s practice, and the odds were always in favor of the seven-time Super Bowl champion being able to rebound in his second outing against the Titans.

That doesn’t wipe out the Titans’ impressive defensive performance from Wednesday, though.

The unit may have struggled a bit on Thursday, but they’re still in sync from a schematic standpoint and miles ahead of their 2020 standing.

Cover images: George Walker IV/The Tennessean