Does a Jurrell Casey reunion make sense for the Tennessee Titans?
By Will Lomas
A blast from the past for the Titans?
It has to be hard getting traded from a team that you were a major part of for your entire career, but for the Tennessee Titans and Jurrell Casey, it was just business.
Now that there are rumblings about Casey potentially getting cut from the Denver Broncos, it is time for both sides to think about mending the fence?
I want to get something out there right now, I think that Jon Robinson and the Tennessee Titans made the right decision when they traded Casey. That isn’t a popular opinion, but you have to look at why the decision was made instead of what the results of the decision were (which didn’t really benefit anyone).
When this trade was made this was my instant analysis of it:
"When Tennessee decided to hand out big extensions to Kevin Byard and Taylor Lewan, they did so because they believed that they were talented players who were integral to building and sustaining the culture in their locker room……[I]f the Titans were really concerned about the locker room having issues they would have kept around stellar leaders like Wesley Woodyard and Logan Ryan. In fact, if they could still bring them back if that is ever a concern with both still on the market.That is all good, but a Pro Bowl player who is a good leader isn’t getting traded for a 7th normally. What really pushed them into the move was a big contract that averaged around $12 million per year over the next three years as well as the rise of Jeffery Simmons and DaQuan Jones."
Basically, Casey’s production wasn’t matching his cost and the Titans needed the money. With that money, the Titans re-signed Ryan Tannehill and Derrick Henry and signed Jadeveon Clowney.
They nailed the first two moves, and obviously, the Clowney signing wasn’t good for anyone.
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But at the time, the thought was “Is a defensive front with Harold Landry, Jeffery Simmons, DaQuan Jones, and Jadeveon Clowney better than a defensive line with Harold Landry, Jeffery Simmons, Jurrell Casey, and Kamalei Correa?”
I think everyone with a right mind would agree that the answer to that question was “yes” and that if this was just about stats on a page then this would have been an easy decision. To me, that is what makes it a smart deal.
But, now we are here and defensive tackle is a need for the Titans. At the same time, Casey’s time in Denver didn’t go well and it looks like the Broncos are ready to cut him and free up the $25 million he is owed over the next two years.
There will be a market for Casey, but how good will that market be? He will be a 32-year-old defensive tackle coming off a season where he missed 13 games and he is going to be limited to a role as a rotational pass rusher that hasn’t had a great season rushing the passer since 2018.
Meanwhile, the Titans have their two starters in Jeffery Simmons and (hopefully) DaQuan Jones on a new deal, but the depth behind them just isn’t there. Teair Tart looks intriguing and maybe they can bring Jack Crawford back, but other than that they have nothing and Matt Dickerson is costing the Titans every time he is on the field.
It is going to be a tough decision for Casey to make and hopefully, the Titans coaches and front office can reach out to him and make sure that his feelings aren’t too hurt about the whole thing. If they could, then signing Casey for a year or two to be a rotational starter/interior pass rush specialist, would be beneficial to everyone.
Will it happen? Who knows, but Tennessee’s tax situation and the love that the Titans fans have for Casey might be enough to make it happen.