It is no secret that the Titans need to upgrade at wide receiver. The question is what are their real free agent options at the position?
It is still very early in the Tennessee Titans off-season, but with most people looking at the draft it is important to remember that there are free agent options out there too. Plenty of analysts have thrown around some big names that the Titans should go after, such as Alshon Jeffery and even this crazy guy last week suggested Terrelle Pryor. Also, every mock draft seems to have the Titans taking a highly ranked receiver with one of their first round picks. Now, as fun as it is to look at the big names, let’s take a look at some players that could make a strong impact without breaking the bank or spending a high pick.
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These names will not be sexy but some have some real promise. Patterson will only be 26 years old at the start of the 2017 season. He is as fast as lightning and holds the record for Longest Kickoff Return Touchdown with a 109 yard dash. To go along with that, he is a University of Tennessee product. Therefore, a change of scenery to Nashville will probably be welcome compared to Minnesota. In four NFL seasons, Patterson has 1316 receiving yards, 7 receiving Touchdowns, 4,040 return yards, and 5 return touchdowns. Fortunately for the Titans, Patterson has not reached his potential with the Purple People Eaters, but has shown glimpses of top flight talent. He needs to work on his route running and definitely needs to stay focused. Maybe Nashville is the place for him to take it to the next level.
The Dallas Cowboys exceeded all expectations this year. Well, not all expectations, as their fans have unrealistic ones every year. One of the players that took a step back this year was Terrance Williams. There could be many reasons for this. First, Dak Prescott is more of a game manager than gunslinger. Second, there was a focus on the running game. Finally, other receivers stepped up and took snaps away from Williams. Over his four years in the league, Williams has 2,791 receiving yards and 20 Touchdowns. That’s an average of almost 700 yards and 5 touchdowns a season. He has a great build and is still young.
Believe it or not, Robert Woods has quietly put up decent numbers in Buffalo. Just remember that Buffalo is not the easiest place to play. It is not easy to put up good numbers when you have the likes of Tyrod Taylor and EJ Manuel throwing to you. When next football season starts, Woods will still only be 25 years old and looking to take it to the next level. The thing to remember is Jon Robinson comes from the Bill Belichick front office tree. He wants to find players with potential that he can maximize. Woods is one of those players. He averages just over 600 receiving yards and 3 touchdowns a season. That really is not going to scare anyone, but in the right situation he can unlock his potential.
Stills is one of the most underrated wide outs on the open market. Although he does not have superstar numbers, Stills is one of the faster receivers in the league and makes his presence known. Stills would help with the lack of burst in the Titans receiving corps. He had a decent season in 2016 with 726 receiving yards and 9 receiving touchdowns. Overall, he would be an excellent asset to the team and helpful for the other receivers as well.
The Titans need a new wide receiver. These names may not be everyone’s first choices, but they would be welcomed as an improvement. The four players listed are all young players that have not reached their full potential. Maybe Mike Mularkey can work some magic and turn one of these players into a star.
(All statistics are from Pro Football Focus)