Anyone who doubts that coach Mike Munchak, a Hall of Fame offensive lineman, has built the Tennessee Titans in his own image need only look at this season’s payroll.
Last Friday, USA Today published an NFL salary study that included a team-by-team list of what every player will earn this season and how much each counts against the salary cap.
Four of Tennessee’s five highest-paid players, based on actual dollars (salary and bonuses), are offensive linemen. That group includes both starting guards, free agent Andy Levitre and first-round draft pick Chance Warmack, who were key pieces of an offseason overhaul of that unit.
None of the NFL's other 31 teams has even three offensive linemen among its five highest-paid players. Seven have two, including the New York Giants and Arizona Cardinals, both of which have three offensive linemen among their top six.
Nearly 20 percent of the Titans’ player payroll (19.71 percent, to be exact) goes to offensive linemen, which is the largest of any position group. Next is defensive backs, which accounts for 15.37 percent of the money spent on players.
The paper’s breakdown of the Titans’ salary cap distribution by position group:
The 10 highest-paid Titans in 2013 (source: USA Today):
• Andy Levitre, OL $13,005,600
• Chris Johnson, RB $10,003,675
• Chance Warmack, OL $7,633,472
• David Stewart, OL $6,005,425
• Michael Roos, OL $6,004,900
• Delanie Walker, TE $5,805,425
• Jason McCourty, CB $5,005,425
• Michael Griffin, S $4,505,425
• Shonn Greene, RB $4,250,000
• Nate Washington, WR $4,204,500
The 10 highest salary cap figures among the 2013 Titans (source: USA Today):
• Chris Johnson, RB $12,003,675
• Michael Roos, OL $7,504,900
• David Stewart, OL $7,005,425
• Jason McCourty, CB $6,805,425
• Michael Griffin, S $6,305,425
• Kamerion Wimbley, DE $5,805,075
• Nate Washington, WR $5,104,550
• Andy Levitre, OL $4,605,600
• Craig Stevens, TE $3,505,600
• Jake Locker, QB $3,438,146