Coming off of the 2019 offseason the Titans should have been excited about what they were going to get from Rashaan Evans and Jayon Brown this season. In fact, we wrote about how those two could be the best young linebacker duo in the NFL, because at the time they looked like they were ready to take that step.
Instead, Jayon Brown got hurt again in a trend that is genuinely concerning, and Rashaan Evans was one of the biggest liabilities on one of the worst defenses in the NFL.
Most fans have expected the Titans to decline the 5th-year option on Rashaan Evans after this season, but things may be worse than that. It looks like Tennessee may be ready to give Evans real competition as his contract winds down.
Make no mistake about it, there is no world where Benardrick McKinney and Evans can be on the field together. This was a trade where they wanted a veteran player who could be a leader in the middle of that defense if he was asked to be.
The really interesting thing (to me) is that David Long would almost certainly be elevated to a full-time starter if the Titans spent real resources on a player to replace Rashaan Evans.
If you made a list of the Titans best linebackers from the 2020 tape alone, David Long and Will Compton would be fighting for the top spot, and if you disagree you are telling on yourself because you didn’t watch the tape.
It will be very interesting to see if the Titans viewed McKinney as a perfect fit for this defense or if they are actively trying to replace Evans because they think he is hurting the Titans.