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5 strengths and weaknesses for the Tennessee Titans heading into the 2021-22 season

Tennessee Titans
Tennessee Titans

The Tennessee Titans are on the shortlist for the most improved teams this offseason. At the risk of overstating the obvious, landing Julio Jones puts the Titans in the Super Bowl conversation. Jones completes a roster that clearly has more strengths than weaknesses.

However, this team has some obvious weak points that could make the season go sideways. Here are five strengths and weaknesses for the Tennessee Titans going into 2021.

Tennessee Titans strengths

#1 - Quarterback

There was a Titans team before Ryan Tannehill and after Ryan Tannehill. Before Ryan Tannehill, the team struggled to get going with Marcus Mariota, making just one playoff run in four seasons. With Tannehill, the Titans made the playoffs in both 2019 and 2020.

#2 - Julio Jones

Julio Jones' addition could single-handedly be the difference between a Super Bowl run and a one-and-done playoff appearance.

Last season was the worst of Jones' career since 2013 due to injuries, but he still had 771 yards and three touchdowns. If he can revert to his career average in 2021 (around 1,500 yards and seven touchdowns), the Titans offense will be one of the favorites to be the top outfit in 2021.

#3 - AJ Brown

Opposite Julio Jones is AJ Brown, who has become a solid receiver for the Titans. In both of his seasons, Brown has earned over 1,000 yards and at least eight touchdowns.

Brown is expected to set the league alight once again this year. With Julio Jones on the squad as well, Brown could easily add 50 percent to his yardage in 2021 as Jones will soak up a lot of the defense's attention that Brown was previously getting.

AJ Brown
AJ Brown

#4 - Josh Reynolds

Josh Reynolds is flying just a touch under the radar.

This will be his first season with the Tennessee Titans after spending the last four years in Los Angeles with Sean McVay. His best season came in 2020 when he earned 618 yards and two touchdowns. However, his abilities don't show up in his production, as the Rams had a loaded receiving corps and Reynolds was the odd man out.

Now with the Titans and in a slightly elevated role, Reynolds could easily rack up 1,000 yards in 2021.

#5 - Derrick Henry

Derrick Henry is arguably the best running back in the NFL. Last season, he earned over 2,100 all-purpose yards and 17 (!!) touchdowns. His ability to stiff-arm defenders and power his way to first downs and touchdowns is unmatched. With Henry, even if Tannehill is not having a good day, the Titans will be able to move the ball.

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Tennessee Titans weaknesses

#1 - Backup quarterback

While Tannehill is a solid quarterback, the Titans would have huge problems if he suffers an injury. Logan Woodside is expected to be Tannehill's backup. Woodside was a seventh-round pick in 2018 and saw his first action in 2020. He failed to jump off the screen. The Titans' next move should be to address this position with a bigger name. If not, they will be playing with fire in 2021.

#2 - Tannehill's injury history

From 2016 to 2018, Ryan Tannehill's availability was on the shakier side.

In 2016, the quarterback played in just 13 games for the Miami Dolphins. In 2017, he missed the entire season with a torn ACL. In 2018, he only played 11 games.

While he has been able to remain healthy as a member of the Tennessee Titans, as he ages, the injuries could return or impact his play as the wear and tear catches up to him. He will be 33 this season. Injuries could be knocking on his door pretty soon.

#3 - Tougher division

The AFC South definitely got tougher in 2021.

The 11-5 Indianapolis Colts treaded water by swapping out Philip Rivers for Carson Wentz. While the sky seems to be falling in Houston, they finished the season at 4-12 and had to lean on an interim head coach for most of the season. They will be more stable this season, even if the talent level drops as Watson is not expected to play this year.

The 1-15 Jacksonville Jaguars landed one of the most hyped prospects of the last several years in Trevor Lawrence. They are almost guaranteed to be better in 2021. While the Titans got better this offseason, the rest of the division also got better in 2021. It won't be smooth sailing for Tennessee this year.

#4 - Tight end

The biggest weakness on offense at the skill positions is tight end. The starting tight end is expected to be Anthony Firkser in 2021. Last season, he had 39 catches for 387 yards and one touchdown. Put simply, the Titans will want more out of their starting tight end in 2021.

Anthony Firkser
Anthony Firkser

#5 - Rookie kicker

The biggest question for the team going into 2021 is at the kicker position. Kickers can win or lose games. This season, the Titans do not know who they are getting with Tucker McCann. Will he be "Mr. Automatic" or will the Titans stumble in games due to missed extra points and field goals?

If he is a problem, the Titans could see a regression in their win total at the end of the season.

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Edited by Colin D'Cunha
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