With that out of the way, free-agent wide receiver Golden Tate recently went on the radio to describe his ideal landing spot for the 2021 season. Unsurprisingly, the first name he mentioned was the Tennessee Titans.
It makes sense for several reasons including the fact that Tate was born in East Tennessee.
Don’t discount this as a guy who just wants to go home though, this would be a dream scenario for him from a production standpoint as well. Over the last four years, he morphed his career from a versatile playmaker into a very specific role as a slot receiver.
Every slot receiver dreams of a scenario where the best cornerbacks follow someone else and the off-ball linebackers aren’t focusing on him.
In Tennessee, he would be playing inside alongside A.J. Brown the prodigy and Julio Jones the future Hall of Famer, so cornerbacks would have their hands full on the outside. Meanwhile, the linebackers will probably want to keep an eye on that Derrick Henry guy.
Does making a move make sense for the Tennessee Titans?
There are a few things that factor into whether or not this move makes sense for the Titans. So, this is the rapid-fire Q&A.
How much will this cost? Veteran minimum or something that is based more on performance bonuses makes sense, but at this point, you have to figure that there won’t be a hot market for Tate until the middle of training camp at the earliest.
What about Josh Reynolds? Josh Reynolds is going to get plenty of snaps this season, but remember that Julio Jones and A.J. Brown both missed some time last season. On top of that, both Brown and Jones rotate in and out of the lineup quite a bit (both combined for just three games last year with more than 90 percent of the offensive snaps).
Maybe Reynolds will be a rotational player on the outside who keeps Julio Jones and A.J. Brown fresh throughout the season. That would mean that a permanent slot receiver role would still be open for someone like Tate.
Compensatory picks. This is a big one because any free agent signed right now is basically playing with house money. If the Tennessee Titans sign Golden Tate and he still has something left in the tank, then he could bring in a compensatory pick down the line even if he wasn’t in the Titans’ plans long term. Basically what Desmond King did except Tennessee wouldn’t have to give up a pick upfront.
Should the Titans do it? That all depends on how they see Josh Reynolds. It is a very low-risk move that wouldn’t cost a lot and the offense would be getting another motivated player that perfectly fits what they want to do.
Ultimately, it may come down to how many reps the coaching staff wants to give rookie Dez Fitzpatrick. If they think they are loaded at the position then maybe they pass, but it is hard to find a better deal than someone with Golden Tate’s pedigree and expertise at that price point.