CB/WR matchups for Titans and Bears.
For nearly two years the Tennessee Titans allowed their cornerbacks to stay on one side of the field, but the Chicago Bears are going to be the first team to really see the change that this team has made.
Two weeks ago, the Titans matched up Malcolm Butler against Chase Claypool in an attempt to slow him down are his four-touchdown performance against the Philadelphia Eagles a few weeks before.
That was the first time that we saw a cornerback consistently travel with a wide receiver in nearly two seasons since the Titans stopped doing it after shutting out the New York Giants in December 2018.
There were a couple of reasons to think that wasn’t going to be a fluke. First, it was the week that Adoree Jackson finally returned to practice after his knee injury right before Week 1. The presumptive CB1 practiced all week and then didn’t play in that game for some reason.
However, after a full week of install with the plan being for Butler to take Claypool, I assume that it was easiest to let Butler continue to do that and trust the other corners to pick up the slack. Uh-oh.
The second reason that this probably wasn’t a fluke is because the defense has looked like they barely know the playbook through 8 weeks.
I would assume that a big reason for that is that the plan was to run a defense that matched corners to receivers before the season started, then in a panic, the Titans coaching staff went to this ultra-conservative zone/off coverage defense because they were scared of getting beat with big plays through the air without Adoree Jackson being healthy.
Then last week the Titans used this matchup scheme again, this time with Butler trailing A.J. Green and limiting him all day. That all but confirmed that this was going to be the new normal.
So, let’s try to predict which cornerbacks will matchup with which receiver this week as the Titans host the Bears for a battle of 5-win teams.