From the NFL Combine: New Titans OC Tim  Kelly Wants to Find Different Ways to "Stress the Defense"


INDIANAPOLIS – Tim Kelly was handed the keys to Mike Vrabel's offense with the Tennessee Titans.

Promoted to offensive coordinator earlier this month, Kelly spoke to reporters for the first time on Tuesday here at the NFL Combine.

With plenty of uncertainty around him, and more roster moves/acquisitions on the horizon, Kelly admitted it's tough to predict exactly what the offense will look like in 2023 and moving forward.

"That's tough to answer right now just because I don't know if we know exactly what our team is going to look like," Kelly said. "The big thing with how I was raised and how I want to build this thing is we want to be versatile. We want to have versatile players that can do multiple things from multiple formations, from multiple personnel groupings and be out there and give the illusion of being complex where the concepts may not change a whole ton but the illusion of being complex and putting our guys in a position to go out and execute at a high level."

Kelly also knows this for certain: He wants the offense to be consistent, and he wants the offense to score more points.

"Any time we take the field, we want to be able to score as many points as possible," Kelly said. "Obviously that is one (priority). Two is making sure we are playing the game the way Coach Vrabel wants us to play. It is not just an offense versus an offense. It's a team sport, so there's certain times we're going to have to play a certain way to put ourselves in a position to win it. So, making sure we're doing that. And, then again, we want to continue to be versatile in how we want to attack teams. We want to be able to attack people vertically, and want to make them defend every blade of grass. For us, that is going to be the big thing moving forward. We want to continue to find different ways to stress the defense."

Kelly, a year after joining the staff as the team's Passing Game Coordinator, was promoted to offensive coordinator following the departure of Todd Downing, who was not retained after last season.

Kelly, whose brother, Dennis, played offensive line for the Titans for several seasons, has been working on his new job the past several weeks, gearing up for what's next.

"One of things we want to do on offense is we want to be versatile," Kelly said. "Whether it ends up being multiple personnel groupings, multiple formations, playing in multiple tempos, just doing things to keep people off-balance. That's what we're going to look to do moving forward. We want to put our guys in the best position possible."

Prior to joining the Titans as Passing Game Coordinator last year, Kelly spent eight seasons (2014-21) with the Houston Texans in a variety of roles, including Offensive Coordinator (2019-21), Tight Ends (2017-18), Assistant Offensive Line (2016) and Offensive Quality Control (2014-16).

As the Texans Offensive Coordinator in 2021, Kelly guided quarterback Davis Mills to a franchise rookie record for passing yards, ranked second among NFL rookies in passer rating and led all NFL quarterbacks in red zone passer rating (116.8). Wide receiver Brandon Cooks also set a career high with 90 receptions. In 2020, quarterback Deshaun Watson led the NFL in passing yards (4,823) and yards per attempt (8.9), while ranking second in passer rating (112.4) and third in completion percentage (70.2%). While with the Texans, the team captured four AFC South division titles.

The Titans struggled on offense in 2022.

Kelly said he's excited about his new opportunity, and he wants to do his part to help take the team to the next level while being himself.

"I am very fortunate," Kelly said, "and very excited about the opportunity.

"I'm going to be myself. Football is supposed to be fun. It's too hard to do what we do if you are not enjoying yourself and not trying to get the most out of your players. I am going to be myself."

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