These 3 Titans players are poised to have a massive impact in 2022

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Welcome to Talkin' Titans. This is Tennessee Titans beat reporter Ben Arthur.

The Titans’ 2022 roster can be separated into three categories: rookies, new veterans and returning veterans.

Here are my early picks for the biggest impact player in each category.

Rookie: Chig Okonkwo

Free-agent acquisition Austin Hooper may be the No. 1 tight end, but with uncertainty at receiver, the Titans could be depending heavily on the entire tight end room in the passing game.

Okonkwo, a fourth-rounder, has a chance to supplant veteran Geoff Swaim as the top backup.

Okonkwo was arguably the biggest standout at mandatory minicamp, catching four touchdown passes in two practices.

If the former Maryland standout shows proficiency as a blocker in training camp and preseason action, expect him to have a significant role early.

Tennessee Titans tight end Chig Okonkwo (85) races up the field during practice at Saint Thomas Sports Park Tuesday, May 24, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn.
Tennessee Titans tight end Chig Okonkwo (85) races up the field during practice at Saint Thomas Sports Park Tuesday, May 24, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn.

New veteran: Austin Hooper

Hooper came as advertised in the offseason program, flashing early signs of chemistry with quarterback Ryan Tannehill and catching several passes.

A big target, the two-time Pro Bowler should immediately improve Tennessee’s red-zone offense, which dipped to fifth in the league last season after ranking first in 2019 and 2020.

Hooper is my early favorite to lead the Titans in receptions and receiving touchdowns.

Tennessee Titans tight end Austin Hooper (81) runs through drills past passing game coordinator Tim Kelly during practice at Saint Thomas Sports Park Tuesday, June 7, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn.
Tennessee Titans tight end Austin Hooper (81) runs through drills past passing game coordinator Tim Kelly during practice at Saint Thomas Sports Park Tuesday, June 7, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn.

Returning veteran: Derrick Henry

There may be some concern about longevity with Henry, who missed nine games last season with a foot fracture.

But he hasn’t given us any reason to believe he can’t get back to pre-injury form. He’s also coming off prolonged rest for the first time as a pro.

With question marks at receiver, expect the Titans to lean heavily on the Henry-led run game.

Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry (22) races up the field during practice at Saint Thomas Sports Park Tuesday, June 14, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn.
Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry (22) races up the field during practice at Saint Thomas Sports Park Tuesday, June 14, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn.

📧 Any questions or inquiries about the Titans' offseason? Send me a note. I'd be happy to answer. My email is BArthur@tennessean.com.

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This article originally appeared on Nashville Tennessean: These 3 Titans players are poised to have a massive impact in 2022