The Tennessee Titans finished he 2013 season 7-9 and it had a lot to do with two factors, the injury again to QB Jake Locker and the roller coaster inconsistency of RB Chris Johnson. New head coach Ken Whisenhunt will try and bring an offensive minded game plan to transform the Titans and hopefully move the needle enough o get them into the 2014 playoffs. Read my article, 2014 Tennessee Titans NFL Draft Report Card and Player Analysis and see how I think the Titans did in their draft.
Impact free agency will play in the Tennessee Titans 2014 season
The Titans lost a few key players: RB Chris Johnson, CB Alterraun Verner and veteran QB Ryan Fitzpatrick. The Fitzpatrick loss was huge because of Jake Locker inability to stay healthy but Coach Whisenhunt brought in QB Charlie Whitehurst from San Diego because he felt that Whitehurst already understood the offense from playing under him in San Diego. The Tennessee Titans had huge issues getting a kick return man and added WR/Special teams specialist Dexter McCluster who will immediately upgrade their special teams and also can be another target in the passing game. McCluster and new signing, WR Brian Robiskie from Atlanta will lessen the impact of losing Kenny Britt who has been a disappointment in general. DE Shaun Phillips will be playing an OLB role in Defensive coordinator Ray Horton’s hybrid 3-4 defense and should be a welcomed presence giving the Titans an instant leader on the field. MLB Wesley Woodyard brings a constant motor and will help protect the Titans against the run which was a huge issue last year. I think this was a great pickup and should immediately make a positive impact for the Titans. The final piece of Ray Horton’s puzzle comes from Horton’s old team the Pittsburgh Steelers when they sign NT Al Woods. A good pick up and seals the deal that the Titans have an upgraded pass rush and run stopping unit. Only issue I see is the Titans did nothing in either the draft or free agency to replace CB Alterraun Verner and that puzzles me.
Players lost in the off season to other teams
- Kenny Britt, WR–5th season, signed by The St. Louis Rams
- Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB–9th season, signed by The Houston Texans
- Chris Johnson, RB–6th season, signed by The New York Jets
- Jalen Parmele, RB–4th season, signed by The Arizona Cardinals
- Rusty Smith, QB–4th season, signed by The New York Giants
- Alterraun Verner, CB–4th season, signed by The Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Damian Williams, WR–4th season, signed by The Miami Dolphins
Players signed in free agency from other teams
- Dexter McCluster, WR–4th season, signed from The Kansas City Chiefs
- Michael Oher, T–5th season, signed from The Baltimore Ravens
- Eric Olsen, G–3rd season, signed from The Pittsburgh Steelers
- Shaun Phillips, DE–10th season, signed from The Denver Broncos
- Brian Robiskie, WR–5th season, signed from The Atlanta Falcons
- Charlie Whitehurst, QB–8th season, signed from The San Diego Chargers
- Al Woods, NT–4th season, signed from The Pittsburgh Steelers
- Wesley Woodyard, MLB–6th season, signed from The Denver Broncos
Can The Tennessee Titans make it to the playoffs in 2014?
I think the entire season rests on the longevity of Jake Locker. No team in the NFL does well when they have to play split seasons with QBs. The Titans drafted QB Zach Mettenberger but he is the third stringer and unlikely to bypass QB Charlie Whitehurst. No one is expecting miracles of the Titans as this is a true transition year but I do think they have an outside shot at making the playoffs. The drafting of RB Bishop Sankey gives them a powerful running game. The drafting of OT Taylor Lewan may be keeps QB Locker healthy. Drafting DT DaQuan Jones was huge because when motivated, this guy is a specimen and can be a game changer. So look for the Titans to be the sleeper pick for the 2014 season. Coach Whisenhunt got San Diego QB Philip Rivers back on track and I expect the same thing to happen here. I am gonna go out on a limb and say the Tennessee Titans finish 10-6 and earn a wild card game.
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More content from this contributor:
2014 Jacksonville Jaguars NFL Draft Report Card & Pick Analysis
2014 Indianapolis Colts NFL Draft Report Card and Pick Analysis
2014 Tennessee Titans NFL Draft Report Card and Player Analysis
2014 Houston Texans NFL Draft Report Card and Player Analysis
2014 NFL Draft Results and Grades for Each Team for Round 1