Titans defense (mostly) healthy.
It hasn’t been an easy season for the Tennessee Titans, but it helps that the defense is now nearly at 100%.
For the entire season, the Titans have missed Adoree Jackson and that has been clear when you look at the pass defense. He isn’t Tennessee’s only defender to miss time though, over the course of the season look at how many players have actually missed time:
The good news is that the Titans COVID list now only has two starters and both of those players are on offense (Corey Davis and MyCole Pruitt). As Adoree Jackson progresses, Mike Vrabel, Shane Bowen, and the rest of the defensive thinktank should be able to put together a pretty good gameplan going forward.
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Last week the Titans had a healthy rotation at cornerback with Kristian Fulton out and against a team with a lot of speed who wanted to attack all parts of the field. By the end of the game at least 9 defensive backs had played 5+ defensive snaps, which I believe means that every DB except for Chris Milton got a shot on defense.
I don’t expect the Titans to rotate quite as much this week. With a healthy roster that has been able to practice, I expect to see the trio of Malcolm Butler, Johnathan Joseph, and Kristian Fulton get the most snaps, but don’t be surprised if Dane Cruikshank or Chris Jackson get some extra reps at safety and cornerback respectively to help deal with the speed threat posed by Brandin Cooks and Will Fuller.
Speaking of the passing game, this feels like a great time for Derick Roberson to make his first appearance of the season.
As the Titans best pure speed rusher, it would be a huge help to have someone on the field who can close on Deshaun Watson in the open field. Maybe that speed combined with the “revenge game” factor for Jadeveon Clowney can help this pass rush finally be effective.
Regardless of what the Titans want to do, the important thing is that this is the first time they have had nearly all of their defensive arsenal. Adoree Jackson is still out and he is one of the three or four most important players on this defense, but if you can’t have your highest quality players then it helps to have a high quantity of players.