Things change rapidly in the NFL, don’t they? One minute, Arthur Smith is the Tennessee Titans‘ defensive quality control coach (2011). The next, he’s moved over to the other side of the ball to hold the title of offensive quality control coach (2012), but the homey wasn’t done. Nope, he had bigger plans.
Smith worked his way into the offensive line/tight ends assistant gig in 2013, the assistant tight ends coaching gig from 2014 to 2015, and the tight ends coach’s chair from 2015 to 2018. Great results there and hard work led him to the offensive coordinator position from 2019 to 2020. The Atlanta Falcons liked what they saw and hired him as their head coach on January 15th of 2021.
The former Tennessee Titans OC weighs in on losing his best wide receiver.
If you can honestly say that you knew Smith would leave Nashville, wind up in Atlanta, and lose his best wide receiver, Julio Jones, to the only NFL team he had ever worked for prior to ending up with the Falcons, you’re in the wrong profession. You probably need to pursue a career in Vegas as one of those sports handicappers.
That’s part of why we watch sports though, isn’t it? This stuff is better than reality television or maybe it’s our reality television as sports fans.
Recently, Coach Smith hung out on Cris Collinsworth’s podcast to talk about a few things, but it’s his comments on the trade that gave Tennessee a sixth-round selection and brought Julio to Nashville in exchange for a second-round selection in 2022’s NFL Draft and a fourth-round selection in 2023’s selection meeting that should pique the interest of Titans fans. Take a look at this one.
"We knew the issue with the cap, and then obviously the cap went down this year, coming off the bizarre year with the pandemic, the cap actually shrunk, so we knew there were going to be some big decisions we would have to make coming up. The way everything worked out, we feel pretty good… We feel like it was a win-win. With the salary cap, and Julio going to Tennessee, and us right now being able to solve our short-term issue with the cap."
Respectfully, that’s one that Titans fans can disagree with and feel like they’re correct in doing so. Let’s say the Titans were looking to land a wide receiver in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft. The possibilities of them landing someone like Jones are slim.
Let’s say that Atlanta did indeed win with the trade. What are the chances of them finding a future Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee in Round 2 of 2022’s selection meeting or a future seven-time Pro Bowl nod in the fourth round of the draft in 2023?
Tennessee Titans fans will always love Arthur Smith for what he did during ten years in this proud organization, but he’s wearing the wrong colors now. Things change, and we all move on. The Titans got over on Smith’s Falcons, and he won’t get any sympathy from fans of the two-tone blue.