Titans' Taylor Lewan to skip mandatory minicamp

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee Titans left tackle Taylor Lewan is skipping mandatory minicamp this week because he's awaiting a long-term contract extension, general manager Jon Robinson said Tuesday in a statement.

According to Lewan, negotiations haven't been fruitful thus far. He also noted progress has been extremely slow.

"Nothing worth talking about," he told ESPN about extension progress in late May.

Lewan has been present for much of OTAs, but he and his agents decided to skip minicamp in hopes of getting more contract progress.

"As we start the mandatory veteran minicamp, we were informed by the representatives for Taylor Lewan that he would not be attending the camp," Robinson said in a statement issued by the team.

"We have had several constructive conversations over the last 5-6 weeks about his contract status. He is currently under contract and we are working to keep Taylor as part of this organization for a long time."

Lewan, who is scheduled to play on a fifth-year option worth $9.341 million in 2018, has been a Pro Bowl selection for each of the past two seasons.

Lewan and his representatives are aiming to surpass New York Giants left tackle Nate Solder as the NFL's highest-paid offensive lineman. Solder received a four-year, $62 million deal with $35 million guaranteed from the Giants in March.

"Of course I think about it. I'm a professional athlete. I'm going to see these things. You see Nate Solder making the contract he did, it's awesome for him and the position," Lewan said. "I hope everybody gets paid ..."

Lewan should be the next extension on the Titans' radar because it seems more likely that a big extension for quarterback Marcus Mariota would happen during the 2019 offseason. Robinson has told Lewan they want to get a long-term deal done.

The Titans have more than $30 million in cap space, but as of now they are holding tight.

Robinson has made moves to extend homegrown players like Lewan in the past, including giving Jurrell Casey a four-year, $60.4 million extension last summer even though the Pro Bowl defensive lineman had two years left on his previous contract.

"If the contract is going to get done, it's going to get done. If not, I understand -- it's a business," Lewan said. "It's cool to look at numbers and 'what if,' but at the end of the day, I've got to play ball. I've got to be the best left tackle I can be, the best left tackle in the NFL."

Lewan has been a prominent member of Titans promotions this offseason, from the uniform unveiling to helping first-year coach Mike Vrabel establish his new culture. He is the Titans' biggest personality, often playing the bodyguard role for the team and Mariota. Lewan's nasty streak shows up often -- occasionally after the whistle. He's also one of the team's most important leaders and voices.

By all accounts, he seems to be someone the Titans want to invest in long term. And as for now, both sides are at an impasse.

"When it comes to this kind of stuff, that's why I have an agent. I don't give them 3 percent to sit on their ass. I'm being serious," Lewan said. "If they want to go, and Jon wants to call and they want to have a conversation, I'm more than willing to, but I'm not going to move forward any in my life not focusing on football."