At this point, we just need to see a football game. We’ve discussed the Tennessee Titans ad nauseam, haven’t we? How many more times can we talk about how brilliant Derrick Henry is or how we’re sick of watching everyone undervalue Ryan Tannehill before we see some real product on the football field?
The NFL’s 2021 regular-season opener, a game between the Dallas Cowboys and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, one in which Titans fans didn’t have a dog in the fight, proved to be wildly entertaining, but all it did was intensify the appetite for Tennessee’s opener.
You know this stuff like you know the back of your hand or your children’s names. Week 1 brings us a home game versus the Arizona Cardinals. Tennessee is and should be favored. The Cards can’t be undervalued even though technically, the Titans are the better team on paper, but here are a couple of angles that we, maybe, haven’t discussed enough.
The Tennessee Titans have two major question marks heading into Week 1.
Tennessee’s offense reached levels that no one assumed they might in 2019 once Ryan Tannehill took over for Marcus Mariota, and they were even better a year ago. Unfortunately, and this is something we don’t discuss much, their offensive coordinator of the past two seasons is now the head coach of the Atlanta Falcons now (Arthur Smith).
As a matter of fact, Tennessee has two new coordinators. Todd Downing is on the offensive side of the ball, and Shane Bowen takes over as the defensive coordinator. Some of what you guys are thinking is obvious. After what we saw from Tennessee on defense a year ago, a change at DC is welcome, but that leads us to our other point, and this can’t be understated either.
The Titans return 12 of 22 starters. That’s tied for the highest turnover in the NFL, so what do we make of this? Clearly, this is a major red flag, right? As the great Lee Corso would say, “not so fast friends”.
Concern doesn’t necessarily mean danger awaits. Tennessee lost a lot of bodies from the offensive and defensive side of the ball, but you can make the argument that they’re better at every position other than at tight end.
Julio Jones is clearly an upgrade over Corey Davis. Jackrabbit Jenkins has the potential to be better than Malcolm Butler. Here’s the real question. How long will it take for this team to gel? You have to admit. We’ve never seen all of the most important parts on the field at the same time, but take a deep breath. This should all work out.
The key here is not reacting to anything we see in Week 1. The Titans should win, but this could be sloppy. Again, we’re talking about new players, new ideas, and new talent. It takes time to find the right mixture, but once they do, the Tennessee Titans are headed towards big things in 2021