NASHVILLE - Titans coach Mike Mularkey took some time to think about how to best reorganize the team’s practice schedule Monday to ensure the players are on the field together during the total solar eclipse.
The Titans will end practice at 1:20 p.m. and pass out protective eclipse glasses. Totality will begin at 1:27 p.m. and last nearly two minutes.
It took Mularkey far less time to identify the player most likely to remove the glasses and stare at the sun – Pro Bowl left tackle Taylor Lewan.
“Lewan,” Mularkey blurted after practice Thursday. “Let me think about that, ‘Ahhh, Lewan.’”
For his part, Lewan laughed and agreed he's most likely. But he said it’s not going to happen.
“No,” Lewan said. “I’m not going to stare at the sun.”
Nashville is the largest city in the path of the total eclipse, the first to sweep across North America from coast to coast in 99 years. Its path stretches from Oregon to South Carolina.
“I just moved some things around,” Mularkey said, detailing how he reorganized the team’s practice schedule. “I really had us right in the middle of a team period when that thing happens, and I thought ‘Wow, what a cool thing to do.’ But then I thought, ‘I’m going to see if I can finish the practice and give them time to get the glasses on and really enjoy the experience.’ So we’ll finish about 1:20 with the 1:27 eclipse happening. And then practice is over with. But I wanted to be on the field when it happened, as a team. I thought it’d be a neat memory for these guys.”
The partial eclipse will begin in Nashville at 11:58 a.m. and end at 2:54 p.m.
Won’t it be difficult for the players to concentrate on football practice while the moon is beginning to pass in front of the sun?
“That’s one of the reasons I changed (practice) to end before (totality),” Mularkey said. “I think it’d have been difficult to get back in and finish a practice after the fact. So they’ll be fine.”
As for instructing the players on the importance of wearing eclipse glasses:
“We’ll have a long meeting on it,” Mularkey said.
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