Tennessee Titans highlight the 2019 All-Retired team for ESPN.
I could be wrong, but I don’t see a team better represented than the Tennessee Titans on ESPN’s All-Retirement team.
I count five players who were drafted or signed by the Titans on that list, which is kind of surprising when you think about it. For a team that has produced one playoff win in over a decade to have so many talented players retired all at once is strange.
This isn’t like a wave of New England Patriots all hit the age where they had to walk away, it is just several names from various Titans eras. Take a look:
Chris Johnson, RB
"“Johnson’s 2,006-yard performance in 2009 earned him the nickname CJ2K. He finished his career with 9,651 rushing yards, good for 35th on the NFL all-time list. He also added 64 total touchdowns and a bunch of footraces won.”"
-Chris Johnson is the most electrifying player to consistently touch the football in the last 20 years. Randy Moss was amazing, Adrian Peterson was consistently dominant, Tyreek Hill is problematic but close, but none of these players had a stretch where they consistently broke the physics of football with their playmaking ability like Johnson.
Andy Levitre, IOL
-Levitre just never really worked with the Titans. He had a huge contract and struggled to stay healthy, but the biggest problem he had was coming in during an offseason where he and Chance Warmack were supposed to bring the Tennessee OL back to elite status only to see it fall off of a cliff.
I don’t think it is all his fault, but he never was a great fit for the Titans scheme and ultimately both parties would probably rather forget their relationship.
Brian Orakpo, EDGE
"“Orakpo wasn’t the flashiest player on this list, but he produced a sneaky-good career with four Pro Bowls over 10 years.”"
-I give a lot of credit to Derrick Morgan and Brian Orakpo. From 2015-2017, they had one of the best runs by a tandem of EDGE rushers in franchise history.
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It wasn’t always an explosive first step and a sack, but they consistently brought pressure from the EDGEs and were never liabilities on rush downs. They helped turn the Titans defense from a laughing stock to something to be afraid of again.
Adam “Pacman” Jones, CB
-I remember watching Jones return kicks and intercept passes as a child and thinking he was God’s gift to football. Times and context have given me perspective on that, but don’t ever forget just how impressive he was at his best with the Tennessee Titans.
Alterraun Verner, CB
"“He played most recently for Miami in 2017, but he was at his best with Tennessee, where he made the Pro Bowl in 2013 with a career-high five interceptions.”"
Verner had the opposite Tennessee Titans career as Andy Levitre. Verner was cerebral and technically sound, but most importantly he fit the defense Gregg Williams runs like a glove. It is really surprising to me that the two didn’t team up more throughout their careers.
When he and fan favorite Jason McCourty were locking down receivers in 2013, it was the only time I can remember as a Titans fan actually hoping the defense would pass the ball. I couldn’t wait to see what they would do, and a lot of that is because of “ATV”‘s NFL leading 22 pass break ups and 5 interceptions.