Comeback Player of the Year: Tajae Sharpe (3 votes)
Our voters were far less split when it came to selecting the Comeback Player of the Year. The Titans were extremely fortunate when it came to injuries and down years last season. Credit is due to Mike Mularkey and his staff for handling banged-up players extraordinarily well and getting almost all of the roster to perform at a very high level throughout the season.
Even though it’s usually tougher for offensive linemen to win this award without the help of gaudy stats or the glamour afforded to positions like wide receiver or edge rusher, Dobbins believes that a strong start from Jack Conklin against divisional foes would go a long way to earning the young RT the Comeback Player of the Year award.
Mariota also garnered two votes for the CPOY award, with Matias Wodner noting that despite his “year to forget in 2017”, Mariota will bounce back quickly under a new coaching staff with a number of dynamic weapons like Corey Davis, Taywan Taylor, and Dion Lewis.
Tajae Sharpe, one of the aforementioned weapons, ended up taking home the award in our preseason predictions. Many fans forgot how well Sharpe played as a fifth-round rookie in 2016. Although the receiving corps has far more talent this season than in Sharpe’s rookie year, he can still put up good numbers as the team’s fourth receiver.
Sharpe’s route running and great hands will always earn him his fair share of targets even if he sees the field less than other players. Furthermore, as Lombardi points out, Davis and Rishard Matthews have both struggled with injuries in the last year. If either player is forced to miss any time this season, Sharpe can easily slot into the lineup and perform admirably, as he did in his rookie year.
Also Received Votes: Marcus Mariota (2), Jack Conklin (1)