Titans see WR Treylon Burks making impact on special teams

After two lackluster seasons at wide receiver, former first-round pick Treylon Burks will have to do more, the Tennessee Titans’ new head coach Brian Callahan said on Tuesday.

Callahan liked what he saw as Burks lined up for some special teams plays as the gunner on punt coverage during the Titans’ minicamp practice.

“He’s going to have to contribute,” Callahan said of roles on special teams for Burks, a 6-foot-2, 225-pounder. “You know you only get so many hats on game day, and if he’s one of those guys on game day, we’re going to have to find a place for him. Guys like him should be great special teams players on top of it, just because of his size and speed. And so the gunner thing is something I think he’s very capable of doing, there might be some more roles for him in the other phases, as well.”

The Titans made Burks the 18th overall pick of the 2022 NFL Draft out of Arkansas after trading star receiver A.J. Brown to the Philadelphia Eagles. While Brown has flourished as one of the NFL’s best receivers, Burks has endured two injury-plagued seasons.

As a rookie, he started six of 11 games and totaled 33 receptions on 54 targets for 444 yards and one touchdown.

Last season, Burks started nine of 11 games and caught 16 of 30 targets for 221 yards and no scores. He was seventh on the team in receptions, behind leader and established star DeAndre Hopkins (75 receptions, 1,057 yards, seven TDs).

Tennessee bolstered the wide receiving corps by signing veterans Calvin Ridley and Tyler Boyd in the offseason.

Burks, 24, played one snap on special teams in 2023 and 24 snaps in 2022 — on return units. He had a combined 836 snaps on offense. Burks, an All-Southeastern Conference receiver at Arkansas, had experience returning punts and kickoffs for the Razorbacks.

“Anytime you’re not the full-time starter, you’re going to have to contribute somewhere on game day,” Callahan said, “and I think Trey’s attitude and approach to special teams has been fantastic, and so I’m excited to see what he can do for them. I think he’s an asset on special teams.”

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