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Should drafting a QB be on the agenda for the Tennessee Titans?

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When the Tennessee Titans awarded quarterback Ryan Tannehill with a new contract after the 2019 season, they felt like they had the guy that could take them to another level. Before Tannehill arrived in Nashville, the Titans had witnessed a subpar performance from the quarterback position. So head coach Mike Vrabel benched Marcus Mariota to have Tannehill under center. Tannehill took over as the Titans starter and never looked back.

With the former Texas A&M QB at the helm, Tennessee has advanced to the playoffs in the past three seasons. In 2019, when Tannehill took over for Mariota, the Titans played in the AFC championship against the Kansas City Chiefs. Tennessee would lose to Kansas City; however, everyone knew who the starting QB would be. The Titans signed Tannehill to a four-year 118 million dollar contract.

The following two seasons, Tennessee exited the playoffs early despite having a better overall roster and the advantage of playing at home. Last year, the Titans secured home-field advantage throughout the postseason only to fall short to the eventual AFC Super Bowl LVI representative, the Cincinnati Bengals.
What was intriguing about the loss to Cincinnati was that the Titans sacked Joe Burrow nine times and still failed to capitalize on their chances of winning.

The past two playoff exits have raised the issue of whether Tannehill is the right QB to lead the Titans to a Super Bowl appearance. Many believe that he has limitations and can only do so much to get Tennessee over the hump. However, with the 2022 NFL Draft looming, the Titans taking a quarterback in the later rounds is not a far-fetched idea. To make sense of it, the staff at Strike 7 Sports each shared their perspective on how the Titans should proceed with the situation.

Derrick Branch

Here’s something to point out with Tannehil’s tenure as the Titans starting QB. At the time of his insertion into the lineup, Arthur Smith was Tennessee’s offensive coordinator. Under Smith’s guidance, Tannehill’s interception total was under double-digits from 2019 thru 2020. His 3,819 passing yards, 33 TDs, and only seven interceptions are MVP numbers. Smith would become the new head coach of the Atlanta Falcons after the 2020 campaign was over.

Todd Downing was promoted from tight ends coach to the Titans offensive coordinator role. Under Downing’s watch, the Titans’ production on offense diminished significantly. Tannehill went from only single-digit interceptions in his first two seasons to 14 in 2021. In addition, the offense went from averaging 30.7 points per game in 2020 to 24.6 in 2021. While it would not be a far-fetched idea for the Titans to draft a quarterback in 2022, they need to continue to see if Tannehill and Downing can get on track this season. Sometimes, a quarterback takes a season or two to become acclimated to a new offense. 

Verdict: Draft a Quarterback, but monitor Downing’s progression as an offensive coordinator.

Brian Bada

It is almost time for the NFL Draft. That means it is time to see how the Titans will improve their roster. Tennessee need’s to take a quarterback in this draft. Tannehill has shown in the playoffs the past two seasons that he cannot raise this team’s ceiling. This could be his last season as the Titan’s quarterback. The franchise can move on after this season due to an early out in his contract.

During the draft, the Titans should take a quarterback, redshirt him and hand him the keys to the offense. Even though a lot of people think this quarterback class is not strong. The Titans can still take a quarterback prospect they like and develop him to their best abilities. If they do this the right way, they can reap the benefits for years to come.

Verdict: Draft a quarterback, plain and simple.

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