Arthur Smith Tennessee Titans

How will Arthur Smith be able to spread the ball around on offense?

  • AJ Brown
  • Arthur Smith
  • Derrick Henry
  • NFL
  • Ryan Tannehill
  • Tennessee Titans
By TreJeanWatkins August 12, 2020 0 Comment
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Will the Titans be able to spread the ball around on offense?

It’s safe to say that everyone wants an NFL offense to employ a vast multitude of weapons. Who wouldn’t? More weapons on offense mixed with a couple of controllable variables, equals more points on the board. Plus, you’ll likely add a couple more wins in the ole win column.

However, with many weapons on an offense, comes the possibility of someone getting the short end of the stick. That isn’t as big of a concern if you’re running more of a spread offense for example. It’s pretty basic in nature, but a spread offense gives you more chances to sling the football across the field. You can run out a multitude of different formations, and ease concerns of unequal ratios in touches.

But in the end, it’s more likely than not that you’ll fail at equally spreading the ball around. There’s too many instances of unexpected failure that proceed to cause that sort of plan to go up in flames. Turnovers, dropped passes, sacks, things like those that are elementary in terms of basic logic.

All this pointless verbiage is all tied to a question that’s suddenly become quite relevant to this Tennessee Titans squad. How will Arthur Smith be able to spread the crumbs around on offense?

You might say “the Tennessee Titans? You have those type of concerns with the Titans?”. Why yes, I do. We’re in a new era of Titans football, where a number of points are expected to be scored, and the quarterback situation isn’t a constant revolving door.

The offense is full of playmakers, ready to turn any ordinary play, into one that’ll make you scramble to clip it and share it on your timelines.

Which makes me echo my previous question.

How will Titans offensive co-ordinator Arthur Smith equally share the bread among his endless selection of talent? It’s a question that should be asked, especially with the offense the Titans are planning to run.

The Titans Scheme Isn’t Friendly Towards Equal Touches

You should know by now, the Titans have stuck with a run first approach for a while, and there’s no reason for them to distance their selves away from it.

Seriously, why would they?

This offense set the league on fire once Ryan Tannehill was inserted into the lineup. The same scheme was ran, with a couple changes that turned out to be season changing.

Plus, Arthur Smith is very comfortable abusing this zone running scheme each and every week. The offensive line is perfectly suited for it, especially that left side, which is led by Taylor Lewan and Rodger Saffold.

There’s obviously no reason for the team to tear up what they’ve done, and run with a brand new approach just so everyone can get their fair share. It sounds kind of negative when you think about it, but it’s reality nonetheless.

This team also just won’t do it. You can try, but you won’t be able to pry the desire of a physical football team from their hands. Jon Robinson and Mike Vrabel both love the run game/play good defense mantra, so much that they can’t stop praising said mantra whenever they’re asked about it.

Even with the promises of Arthur Smith, to lessen Derrick Henry‘s workload, and find more consistency in the passing game, there’s just no way I see this schemes’ ideals being uprooted from this football team.

No chance.

The Offense Has A Lot of Playmakers That Need The Ball

Like I mentioned before, this offense is full of guys who can turn ordinary plays, into clips for highlight reels. But which guy is at the top of the food chain in terms of touches?

Obviously Derrick Henry is your first choice for a large amount of touches, as his abnormal size and speed have allowed him to become the face of this rising offense.

After Henry, there’s AJ Brown, the stellar 2nd year pro who’s become the Titans’ most reliable wide receiver. There has to an added emphasis on getting Brown the ball early and often, whether that’s with screens, or whatever Arthur Smith decides to cook up.

If you want to have more stability in the passing game, you have to target this guy, no questions asked. He’s a game breaker, a big play waiting to happen, leaving his talent out of the equation is simply foolish.

The pecking order gets a little dicey after that, but we can continue with Jonnu Smith. His sheer athleticism and ability to break tackles has to be taken into consideration when discussing offensive touches.

That sheer athleticism opens up the door for Smith to be used in a variety of ways, take last season for example. Smith got some of carries out of the backfield, where his electrifying speed for the tight end position was put on display. Smith even got chances to show off his physical frame in the red zone, shielding off smaller defenders for a couple scores over the course of 2019.

Smith’s reception totals have also increased each year he’s been in the league, and his target numbers jumped from 30 to 44 last season.

It’s obvious, Smith is due for a breakout year, he just needs the ball in his hands.

Then there’s Corey Davis, who needs a big year if he wants to stay in Nashville past 2020. The former 5th overall pick needs touches, and he needs them often.

Adam Humphries will be looking for touches as well.

Humphries’s first year in Nashville was dominated by injuries, which limited any sort of potential success. Humphries’s case is also plagued by a bit of confusion, simply because his defined role as a slot receiver technician isn’t so much of a rarity anymore. The Titans also don’t prefer running with 3 WR sets, which limits Humphries’s playing time.

Darrynton Evans’s explosion can’t be left on the sideline too often either. The 2020 3rd round selection will get some looks as RB2, and maybe some extra playing time in different sub packages.

The Bottom Line

To put it bluntly, this Titans offense has a boatload of players that deserve touches. Unfortunately, limitations in scheme, and other factors make equal touches almost impossible.

It’ll be interesting to see how Arthur Smith divides up the touches ratio, and who he goes to often.

This’ll be a big test for the 2nd year OC, who’ll be tasked with recapturing that 2019 magic, and sprinkling it on the offense throughout the 2020 season.

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