Jonnu Smith is key to the Tennessee Titans this week

NASHVILLE, TN - AUGUST 19: Jonnu Smith
NASHVILLE, TN - AUGUST 19: Jonnu Smith /

Why a 3rd round pick is the key to a Tennessee Titans win.

Football is back and the Tennessee Titans finally get to play a meaningful game on Sunday.

In case you didn’t know they take on the Oakland Raiders at home in what is supposed to be a great season for the Titans.

All of that can change quickly if the Titans come out and lay a dud in their opener.

More from Titans News

There will be plenty of time to talk about the flashy matchups, I mean look at this:

Corey Davis vs Gareon Conley

Eric Decker vs David Amerson

Rishard Matthews vs Sean Smith

There are some big names in that group on both sides. But, I think the player that really has a chance to give the Titans an advantage is 3rd round rookie Jonnu Smith.

In case you just don’t watch the preseason, Jonnu Smith was mostly thought of as a receiving threat coming out of college, which is fair. However, he has been very impressive on run downs opening up holes for some of Tennessee’s biggest gains.

Live Feed

Titans re-signing Jeffery Simmons leaves a Hulk-sized footprint in AFC South
Titans re-signing Jeffery Simmons leaves a Hulk-sized footprint in AFC South /


  • Bergkamp FIFA 23 Challenges: How to Complete the Trophy Titans Icon ObjectiveDBLTAP
  • Other teams should get in on Aaron Rodgers sweepstakesWith the First Pick
  • 3 NFL teams that need to swoop in, steal Aaron Rodgers from the JetsNFL Spin Zone
  • Will the Tennessee Titans trade up for a quarterback?With the First Pick
  • Titans could select local product for latest quarterback projectFanSided
  • Combine those things with how quickly he is grasping the playbook and how much of a moving piece he has been so far, and you get someone that needs to play Week 1.

    Smith is good, but he isn’t going to take many (if any) snaps away from Delanie Walker who is still TE1. Luckily for the Titans, Mike Mularkey loves to use two tight end sets.

    While this gets versatile talent on the field for Tennessee, more importantly it keeps good talent off the field for the Oakland Raiders.

    In case you didn’t know the Raiders are notorious for not being able to cover tight ends and for having bad linebackers. By bringing in two tight ends they are exposing their weakness twice over AND bringing the third player in a bad position group onto the field.

    If they still want to play small ball and go with their nickel package, great. Use your two-headed jackhammers in the backfield and run it right at them.

    This is a great time to let Marcus Mariota really play around with the offense if he is going to be given more freedom at the line of scrimmage.

    A final benefit is this reduces the snaps on the wide receivers, so that they can roll in and not get a bunch of wear and tear. That is important since the Titans decided to only go with 5 wide receivers.

    More from Titan Sized

    I just don’t see how this package isn’t heavily featured on Sunday. With what Mularkey has done in the past and with what Jonnu Smith has done in the practice and preseason, they would be crazy not to give him a ton of reps at TE2.

    Jonnu Smith and Delanie Walker could be a great one-two punch at tight end for a long time, and this would be a great chance to prove that the concerns about the OL and the running game were unfounded if they don’t bring that third linebacker on the field.