The Brady Akins plan
The name of the Tennessee Titans’ free agency game should be a simple one; bulk up on the defensive front-seven and maintain the status quo on the offensive side of the ball.
For the latter– that should involve the resigning of two pass-catchers coming off of semi-breakout seasons in 2020, wide receiver Corey Davis and tight end Jonnu Smith. Smith looked to be on the verge of an elite season through the first four games of the season– with a combined five touchdowns on 18 receptions– but the tight end’s production dwindled as the season progressed, ending with just 23 catches and three touchdowns through his final 11 games.
Davis’ production was a bit more consistent, nearly breaking 1,000 receiving yards for what would have been the first time in the fourth-year player’s career. Both he and Smith, despite not fully breaking out, showed flashes of being key contributors to an offense that was among the NFL’s best in 2020– bringing them back to see if they can build on those breakouts should be paramount for Jon Robinson.
On the defensive side of things, the third-fewest sacks recorded in the league last season suggest a glaring need for some pass-rush help. Luckily, there should be some options in the free-agent pool.
Former All-Pro and longtime Houston Texans veteran JJ Watt is looking for a new team for the first time in his career, and should have enough left in the tank to be Tennessee’s top threat on the defensive line from day one. Similarly, another All-Pro in Denver’s Von Miller is rumored to be looking for a new franchise to call home– and could be an instant impact player on a Titans’ defense in need of help at the position.
Beyond the big-name veterans on the edge rusher FA class is a deep group of players, from Shaquil Barrett to Bud Dupree– Tennessee would be wise to bring at least one new face into the defensive front after managing just 19 sacks in 2020.
Cut/let walk: Jayon Brown, DaQuan Jones,
Extend: Ben Jones
Re-structure: Taylor Lewan, Rodger Saffold
Successfully sign: Corey Davis, Jonnu Smith, Bud Dupree, Romeo Okwara
Attempt to sign and fail: J.J. Watt, Von Miller, Shaq Barrett,