Titans CB Caleb Farley 'extremely grateful' to be playing again

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The mere experience of being out there on the field is something that Tennessee Titans cornerback Caleb Farley doesn't take for granted every time he puts on a jersey and laces his cleats. There was a point where Farley thought football was no longer a possibility for him.

"I've been feeling extremely grateful," Farley said on Thursday. "I don't think you guys understand. I really truly believed I would never play football again. To be out here and running around, I just feel grateful."

Farley, a 2021 first-round pick by the Titans, has faced his share of adversity since entering the NFL. Various injuries limited Farley to 12 games over the past three seasons. Farley's most recent injury, a herniated disk, required a microdiscectomy and raised concerns that he would never be able to step on the field again.

Less than a year ago, Farley's home in Mooresville, North Carolina, was leveled in an explosion that killed his father, Robert Farley, and injured another man. Farley has battled his way back to the football field and taken part in all of the Titans OTAs along with minicamp.

Farley's perseverance has impressed new Titans coach Brian Callahan.

"I'm proud of the fact that he keeps working at it," Callahan said in May. "What might have shut a lot of guys down and the fact that he keeps coming out, keeps trying to play, keeps rehabbing is really impressive."

Farley credits his faith as the primary source that "nudged him along during some very low and dark moments." He also made sure to point out how new Titans teammate Chidobe Awuzie has been a steadying presence since he joined the team as a free agent in March.

"I don't think anybody could really relate to what he's going through," Awuzie said Thursday. "It's always about how you respond to it. I saw very quickly he's a very competitive guy."

Farley admitted to having a lot of emotions and passion from the adversity. But in his mind, getting to put the pads on and play football is an ideal opportunity to release it all. While he's thankful for all of the well-wishes and sympathy he has received, Farley is only focused on the opportunity in front of him.

"I'm ready to come to training camp not to participate, to come compete," he said.