Tennessee Titans fans should keep an eye on Racey McMath

Tennessee Titans Mandatory Credit: Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports
Tennessee Titans Mandatory Credit: Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports /

During Tennessee Titans training camp last year, the hype train for Racey McMath was out of control.

In reality, McMath was always going to be a project who spent most of his time on special teams during his rookie year. Instead of getting that full year of development, he ended up being forced out on offense because of injuries at his position.

If this was a perfect world, we would be talking about how McMath played nearly 200 snaps on special teams despite missing the majority of the season last year. Instead, McMath is an afterthought on this roster, but maybe he is being overlooked.

A month ago I wouldn’t have written this article, but a few things have changed since then. The most important thing is that the preseason is going to be a lot more important this year.

Tennessee Titans plans for Racey McMath now

The reason why it is going to be important is that rookie QB Malik Willis is going to have a chance to start to prove why he should be considered as a starter for the 2023 season.

2022 belongs solely to Ryan Tannehill and the San Francisco 49ers are currently learning that spending a draft pick on a “QB with potential” doesn’t always mean that you are going to be better off. In fact, it may have cost them a Super Bowl in 2022.

If Willis is going to prove that he has the potential to be a franchise quarterback in Nashville, he needs to spend a lot of time with Racey McMath.

Malik Willis needs to grow as a quarterback and show that he can stand in the pocket instead of bailing at the first sign of pressure, and it would really help if he could show that he can consistently make throws over the middle. However, as a passer, Willis was at his best in college when he was throwing deep passes outside the numbers.

That is where McMath comes in. McMath is 6-foot-2.5-inches and he ran a 4.39 40-yard dash, so despite the fact that he is unrefined as a route runner, he has to be able to run a “go” route if he is ever going to make it on offense in the NFL.

At Liberty, Willis never had anyone with that combination of size and speed, and the potential for those two against preseason defensive backs is very interesting.

In the short term, it could help McMath cement his role as the special teams player who can be an occasional vertical threat on offense. In the long term, it could be the young connection that we never saw coming.

Will McMath be a revelation for the Tennessee Titans offense? Probably not, but receivers coach Rob Moore is a good teacher and he has all the physical tools to at least be a one-trick pony in the NFL. In fact, he and Kenny Stills aren’t that different physically, and if he could become a poor man’s Kenny Stills in Tim Kelly’s offense, it would be huge for everyone involved.