As the Tennessee Titans new general manager Jon Robinson gets ready for offseason activities, I sure hope he had a good look at how much a great defense can control a football game, based on the outcome of Super Bowl 50.
The Denver Broncos number one ranked defense, along with a relentless pass rush changed the entire scope of the football game and lost in the outcome, was how well the Carolina Panthers sixth ranked defense performed as well.
Robinson, and head coach Mike Mularkey will have an opportunity in next couple of months during free agency and the 2016 NFL Draft, to build something special in Nashville, and I think the place to start is finish building the Dick LeBeau defense and a feared pass rush.
The Titans defensed had climbed inside the top 10 during the 2015 season until Derrick Morgan got hurt.
Opposing offenses needing to account for both Morgan, and Brian Orakpo on every down, and when Morgan went down with no replacement, the overall defense fell 12th overall by the end of the year.
The front seven were able to keep the wolves away from the questionable Titans secondary for the most part. After the pass rush went South, the secondary couldn’t take up the slack.
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One of the top priorities for the Titans during this offseason is to find a way to keep Marcus Mariota upright and healthy, and many Mock Drafts are projecting the Titans should take Ole Miss offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil with the first pick, providing they don’t trade out with a team wanting a quarterback.
I disagree with this philosophy because I believe the offensive line is more about coaching and experience than it is about raw talent.
There are very few collegiate offensive linemen who can be plugged into an NFL unit, and be dominating in their first year.
Defensive talent on the other hand that will be effective week one can be had in the draft, and that is why I think the Titans need to bring Ohio State defensive lineman, Joey Bosa to Music City with the first pick.
Even Todd McShay says in his Mock Draft 2.0:
"If no deal materializes, Ole Miss tackle Laremy Tunsil would fill the team’s biggest need. But the move is to pull the trigger on Bosa, the best player in the class. You can never have too many pass-rushers. And remember: One of Bosa’s best traits is that he’s scheme versatile, so he’d be a fit even if the Titans decide to stick with a 3-4 alignment."
I would hope that the Titans bring some veteran offensive line help in during the free agency period and use their early picks to add talent and depth to their pass rush, and beefing up the secondary.
Running backs and wide receivers can be had in the later rounds to give Mariota some weapons, but the great defensive players will go early.
Super Bowl 50 made me a believer in a strong defense, I sure hope the Tennessee Titans brass was watching!