O.J. Murdock was not a prominent member of the Titans, but he wasn’t a newbie either.
Signed on July 28, 2011, he spent last season on injured reserve with a torn right Achilles. He’d been around long enough to develop some locker room friendships.
The receiver who died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound had not reported to training camp. The Titans said he was dealing with a personal issue.
The Titans issued this statement:
“We are shocked and saddened to hear of O.J. Murdock's death this morning. In his brief time here, a number of our players, coaches and staff had grown close to O.J., and this is a difficult time for them. He spent the last year battling back from an Achilles injury as he prepared for this year's training camp. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends as they try to cope with this tragedy."
Mike Munchak will have the Titans in pads for the first time this afternoon. It’s typically an upbeat day, full of energy and spark surrounding the first big hits and a lot of crowd reaction.
In light of such sad news, that practice atmosphere certainly figures to be muted as players and coaches come to terms with the loss of a teammate.