NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Things are not good so far on the Tennessee Titans' offensive line, but players and coaches alike are talking of how the rebuild is a process that will take time.
Sunday night against the St. Louis Rams, they Titans will gather a lot more evidence.
A source told me the Titans are monitoring what's going on with free-agent guard Evan Mathis, a solid player who was released by Philadelphia in June. He was unhappy with a five-year, $25.5 million deal he signed in 2012.
The Titans could become more interested in Mathis if things are bad again on Sunday. Byron Bell moved this week from right tackle to left guard, replacing Andy Levitre on the first team. Word that they are curious about Mathis also helps send a message to the guys not faring so well.
"He's a very good, but slightly declining player… still a very solid starter," ESPN.com's resident scout Matt Williamson said. "He is at his best as a move zone-blocking type guard, but I would say that he doesn't move quite as well as he used to.
"Seattle, where he is visiting, is the better fit. But I think he would be useful in Tennessee."
Mathis may not get to the Seattle visit if something comes together with another team first.
Cap room shouldn't be an issue for the Titans. Levitre currently counts $8.6 million against the cap and is slated to make $6.5 million this year.
If he were cut, he'd still cost them $6.3 million against the cap. It would be hard to swallow that and a salary in the range of what Mathis is looking for. But a bad team trying to get better is obligated to give its rookie quarterback his best chance.
Mathis will be 34 on Nov. 1, and he'll be pricey. I know a lot of fans really want him on the Titans.
I feel confident he'd be an upgrade. But keep in mind, we were sure a far younger Levitre was going to be an upgrade, too.