5. Taylor Lewan
There has already been a lot made about Taylor Lewan stepping into a leadership role, but I think that is a little bit unfair to what he has done in the NFL to this point.
Sure, he is up and down in terms of his penalties but there are very few tackles in the NFL that can handle what he is asked to do. Among those few, only Lewan is constantly energetic with a personality that seems to be bigger than what you get from OTs around the NFL.
Still, this is a list of players who should take on bigger roles this year and Lewan is a good candidate for that. In a few years, Ben Jones will be gone and Lewan will be looked at as the clear elder statesman of the Titans offensive line.
By that time you have to really hope that Lewan is the vocal leader of the offensive line who demands excellence from those around him.
I’m one of the few that could care less whether he gets penalties or not because I think the hidden variable that he adds to this offensive line is the same thing that Kevin Mawae added. You don’t want to take cheap shots at QBs or RBs if you know that Lewan is on the other side of the ball and if he can extend that to the rest of the offensive line then the Titans will be much better for it.