What do the other Tennessee Titans LBs need to prove?
Right now, it is hard to argue that the Titans have a better combination at linebacker than the duo of Long and Cunningham. In fact, when you slot in Cunningham this Tennessee Titans’ defense starts to look a lot like the one that won the Super Bowl last year.
That brings us back to Rashaan Evans and Jayon Brown who need to prove that they can bring something to the table that makes them a better fit with these linebackers.
On base downs and passing downs, there is no contest between the top duo and any other linebacker combination. Evans and Brown will have to try to prove which one of them can do a better job controlling the point of attack as the strong-side linebacker in obvious running situations.
Both Cunningham and Long are great at taking aggressive angles from the backside of plays and using their burst to knife through and make plays. Behind a defensive front that has Harold Landry, Denico Autry, or Bud Dupree setting the edge and Jeffery Simmons, Teair Tart, and NaQuan Jones on the interior, they shouldn’t have to deal with too many big offensive linemen in close quarters.
However, the New England Patriots showed just how hard it can be to stop downhill runs when they literally ran over the Buffalo Bills on Monday Night Football.
In a matchup like that (or in short down and distances against teams that run the ball well) it would help to have a linebacker who can come down and take on the pulling guard or fullback so that one of these other players can make a play.