Tennessee Titans In Search Of A Playmaker

PFC Titans Writer: Dan Johns

Heading into the 2009 NFL off-season, the Titans are left with a bitter pill to swallow after being upset by the 6th seed Baltimore Ravens in their home stadium, thus being eliminating in the AFC’s Divisional Round of the playoffs.  However, on a brighter note the Tennessee Titans should have roughly $35 Million of cap room to spend this off-season and first must look into acquiring star DT Albert Haynesworth before he tests the market. However, the Titans need to desperately address the offensive needs, namely a playmaking sure-fire wide receiver.  Once Chris Johnson, possibly Tennessee ’s sole playmaker on offense in 2008, was injured and taken out of the playoff game vs Baltimore , the Titans seemingly couldn’t move the ball at the ease it was when Johnson was in the game.  That finally should have been the red flag that this organization needs to see – a playmaker coming in to help out the offense.

That’s next on the priority list for Tennessee , that has been their achilies heel for quite sometime – is more playmakers on offense – namely at wide receiver!  Their isn’t a laundry list of WR’s worth noting who will be free agents this year, but one that heads the top is Cincy’s T.J. Houshmandzadeh.  T.J. who is deemed “one of the best complimary receivers in the game as a #2 wr”, could fit right in and be Tennessee ’s stud # 1 receiver they have always seemed to lack.  T.J. along side current # 1 Justin Gage, would give them two big, rangy targets to throw too.

Another interesting developing story is that of Anquan Boldin of the Super Bowl bound Arizona Cardinals.  With Larry Fitzgerald showing he can do it all by himself and combined with the emergence of third WR Steve Breaston – Boldin may be on his way out of the desert.  It’s not to say he is not a top talent – I mean lets face it, he’s arguably one of the best wide outs in the league hands down – no one can question is toughness and hands.  However, he has become an apparent distraction, starting with his year long complaining of his teammate Fitzgeralds newly monster contract compared to his much less dollar amount contract.  On top of all else, Boldin was shown in a yelling match on the sidelines of the Cardinals NFC Championship win with teams Offensive Coordinator – about the lack of playing time he was receiving.  With all that being said, Boldin would certainly be the Titans # 1 WR hands down and combining him with another playmaker like Chris Johnson would pay huge dividends for that lack-luster offense.

And finally the Titans could look to add a receiver through the draft – something that has not been all that kind to their organization.  However, the 2009 NFL/College Draft looks to be plentiful in the wide receiver department.  The top two tier WR’s that are projected to be taken early in the draft are Michael Crabtree Texas Tech and Jeremy Maclin Missouri .  After that, the a number of WR’s could fall to the Titans late first round pick.  Percy Harvin out of Florida has a small frame at only 5’11 and under 200 lbs, but obviously is an immediate upgrading playmaker on the offensive end.  Darrius Hayward-Bey out of Maryland is fast for his size at 6’2 and is my top choice as of now to be picked by Tennessee .  Finally, Hakeem Nicks out of UNC, is one of the hottest WR prospects heading into the Draft and can certainly change a game with his abilities.

The Titans are never known to take receivers in the first round of drafts – but their stacked at running back and offensive line … seem to be set a tight end for the short future … and are stacked for the most part on defense barring a few upgrades in the cornerback department – so maybe this will be the year Tennessee finally drafts that playmaking wide receiver in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft – time will tell.