Titans' Mike Vrabel to Miss Preseason Finale vs. Bears Due to COVID-19 Protocols

Adam WellsAugust 28, 2021

Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel watches from the sideline during the second half of a preseason NFL football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack

The Tennessee Titans are shuffling their coaching staff for Saturday's preseason game against the Chicago Bears with head coach Mike Vrabel unable to be with the team because of COVID-19 protocols. 

Per Jim Wyatt of the team's official website, special teams coach Craig Aukerman will handle communication with the players and coordinator of football development John Streicher will be in charge of game decisions, communication with other coaches and playtime management. 

Vrabel told reporters Tuesday that he had “almost non-existent symptoms" after testing positive for COVID-19. 

“I feel fine. I feel great,” he said. “Ready to get back to work. Hopefully, I can get two negative tests here in 48 hours. If not, then we’ll continue on this path that we’re on right now.”

Vrabel also noted that Titans team doctor John Williams recommended he receive the COVID-19 antibody infusion. 

Wyatt also noted the Titans will be without wide receiver coach Rob Moore and offensive line assistant Jason Houghtaling against the Bears because of COVID-19 protocols. 

Aukerman has been Tennessee's special teams coach since Vrabel's first season with the team in 2018. He had two different stints with the Titans as assistant special teams coordinator from 2013-15 and 2017 before getting his current job. 

Streicher is in his first season as coordinator of football development for the Titans. He spent the previous two years as an assistant to Vrabel. 

The Titans will wrap up their preseason schedule Saturday. They will open the regular season at home on Sept. 12 against the Arizona Cardinals.