NASHVILLE – Hope everyone is staying healthy and safe as we navigate through another week with the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the big picture, that's what it most important.
In the NFL world, free agency is slowing down and the NFL Draft is fast approaching.
As we pass the time, let's dive into another round of questions in this Tuesday's Titans mailbag …
Quincy Steele from Tanner, Alabama
Question: After creating cap room by getting rid of Delanie Walker, Jurrell Casey, Ryan Succop, and Jack Conklin, who do they Titans hope to get OR what are they going to do with all this cap space?
Jim: Hey Quincy. Well, the Titans have used a good chunk of it already with the new deals for a lot of their own players, including Ryan Tannehill, Derrick Henry, Dennis Kelly, Kamalei Correa and MyCole Pruitt, not to mention four free agents signed off other teams, including outside linebacker Vic Beasley. This is going to come as a surprise to a lot of folks, but check out overthecap.com and you'll see the Titans are fourth in the NFL in total spending for free agents signed since the Super Bowl, and second in total guarantees for the contracts. Yes, the team still has some cap space -- about $23 million the last I checked -- and money will be used to address other positions and to sign the draft picks.
Kevin House from Nashville, Tennessee
Question: Will Jadeveon Clowney be a Titan? If not, why are we dumping contracts for seventh round picks! I get that this is a tough offseason to navigate with the pandemic but what if this guy drags out the process and you miss on signing other significant pieces to fill out the roster?
Jim: Hey Kevin. It's TBD on Clowney, and a lot depends on what he's willing to play for in 2020. If he stays firm in his desire to get $17-$18 million per year, I doubt it. And, as I've said in here before, the move to trade away Casey wasn't done in desperation, so the team could jump out and sign someone else like Clowney. There was a lot more to it than that.
Jan Thies from Munich, Bavaria, Germany
Question: Hi Jim. Thanks for updating us! I like your comments and answers a lot and I appreciate your information.
I am from Germany and soccer is way bigger over here, but football is definitely growing. When I started watching football I had no favorite team and I didn't know where I am gonna leave my heart. When I visited Nashville the very first time in summer, I wanted to visit the Nissan Stadium (on a tour for example), but unfortunately it was closed. But I was impressed by the stadium itself and how close it is to the city centre. The next time in Nashville I was lucky, because it was September, so I could watch the season opener. I was sold right away. Since that I am Titan with all my heart and I love the city. My second game followed quickly vs the Texans and it was awesome!
I have one concrete question: Who is going to be our next kicker? I actually liked Ryan Succop. For example, why didn't we sign Greg the Leg? I always thought he is the best kicker in the league?! Dallas now has two big names as kickers. I don't know why kickers always seem to be a little under the radar, as they are actually pretty important.
And another question about football generally: It seems, that if a top player becomes a free agent (beside the quarterback), there is a pretty high chance, that he leaves the franchise. Why is that so? I mean, of course, money is the biggest thing and it's a business, but are the offers seriously that different? Jack Conklin in our case. He is getting – talking about last season – from a contender to a team, that "possibly could have a better next season". To me a downgrade. I don't understand that. One comparison, here in Germany in soccer, when a player gets a free agent and he is already playing for a contender, the chances are pretty high, that he extends his contract. Even if he gets higher paid offers. Another example, which is a Titan matter, Jadeveon Clowney, he was playing for a contender. Titans seem to be in the line as well. Both contenders. And the Jets are apparently also a candidate. But they are definitely not a contender. Why doesn't he resign with the Seahawks, where he might win a ring? I have seen so many big moves, where players move "into the wrong" direction? Of course, the players sometimes don't have too many career years, but it seems that loyalty or the dream to stay with one organization is not as big as here in soccer. Another example would be Dirk Nowitzki in basketball. But to be honest, that goes both ways, meaning for the organization as well. It's nice to have local heroes… Thanks for your help, all the best from Germany, stay healthy and take care.
Jim: Hello Jan. Good to hear from you, and to have you on board. The kicking situation is still up in the air. You haven't heard? The team did sign "Greg the Leg" -- Greg Joseph. 😊 Joseph remains under contract, and I thought he did a nice job at the end of last season. But Titans GM Jon Robinson said on a conference call last week he expects to bring in competition, so we'll have to see what transpires in the coming weeks and months. As for your question about free agency, this has proven true, to an extent. Teams are able to keep some of their top players either with new deals or tags, but others do bolt and I think that's because a lot of times other teams overpay. The Titans have said goodbye to a lot of players over the years because other teams have been willing to offer more money, and I have to say on most occasions the Titans have looked good in the long run. Sure, there have been some occasions where guys left for more money, and they flourished elsewhere. But over the years I can count a lot more who didn't fare as well after leaving on big contracts. I like Conklin, but the Titans weren't going to pay him $14 million a year and I don't blame them, especially after dishing out a big money deal to Taylor Lewan last year. With all that said, I don't blame players for leaving a comfortable place for a chance to make big money. But sometimes the grass isn't always greener, even if the money is.
Binar Qaradakhi from Lavergne, Tennessee
Question: Hi Jim. My question is since Mike Vrabel coached Jadeveon Clowney for a year, does he have interest in him? Thanks!
Jim: Hey Binar. We've established there's interest in Clowney. The GM confirmed this. And this is what Mike Vrabel said about Clowney when asked about him last week: "I know that when I coached JD (Jadeveon Clowney), JD was prepared. We did a lot with him. We had a lot of injuries one year, we put him in a lot of different places to try to help us affect the game. He played extremely hard. He played extremely hard, and I'm not sure if he missed any games that year or not. But we put him in a lot of different places, we asked him to do a lot, and he did do a lot for us. I never had an issue with any of JD's effort on the field."
Jefferey Fradsham from Crewe, Virginia
Question: I read your article about Logan Woodside. The clips were great, but what I remember about him is that the Titans moved the ball down the field with him under center. I am sure the staff will give him a shot at number 2, And I hope he performs well. I am rooting for him. However, if you ever get a chance to name drop, Bryce Perkins would be a good one to drop. He was not invited to Indy, and the talking heads call him a low round draft choice, or even a UDFA. The kid is a baller, just watch some of his film. with 3 in the 7th round, or if he goes undrafted, I think he would be a steal.
Jim: Hey Jefferey. Thanks for the heads-up on Perkins. And you're right on Woodside – every time he's had a chance to play, he's performed well. I like what I've see from him as well, and it sounds like he'll get a shot to win the No.2 job. Woodside has done everything right on and off the field. But we also can't ignore the fact he's competed against back-ups and not starters when he's been out there (I know he's playing alongside them, too) and he doesn't have experience in regular season games. So I expect him to have competition.
Calvin Lum from Phoenix, Arizona
Question: Jim, this not a question, but I really enjoy reading your questions and answers. Sometimes I don't agree with some of the answers, but you tell the truth and don't beat around the bush. Once again thanks for doing a good job, better than some other NFL teams. Always a TITANS.
Jim: Hey Calvin. I really appreciate this.
Joe Noah from Walla Walla, Washington
Question: So now that we have given up our veteran D lineman and lost one of our key pieces on our O line what is next? I see we signed Vic Beasley however he isn't any better than what we lost. We traded one of the top D lineman in the NFL for a 7th rounder that to me is giving him away. Guess from the outside looking in you can say it was a way to not pay him the (13) million he was going to make this year however we are paying Vic Beasley almost the same amount and he isn't as good of a player as #99. I guess in my eyes we are shipping out a lot of our talent and what we are getting isn't as good or better than what we are giving up. I am seeing great players in positions that we need get signed every day and don't see us signing anyone. I hope we aren't waiting for the draft because where we are picking we will be getting what is left over from the top talent. I hope we start doing something in this FA what do you think Jim do you think the Titans will start signing players to replace the ones we lost or are we going to cross our fingers and hope we can do better by losing all that talent?
Jim: Hey Joe. Vic Beasley is better than any edge rusher the Titans have lost. If you're comparing him to Jurrell Casey, well, they don't play the same position. Next is the draft, which produced some big first-year contributors last year, and potentially adding more in free agency.
Chris Chapman from Hermitage, Tennessee
Question: We are in very uncharted territory here bro. To all the fans across the NFL I say to you please just help 1 of your neighbors. If we all do that 1 thing we will make it through this. I'm sad to see Jurrel Cassey, Delanie Walker, and the other guys go but I understand it's business. I have complete faith in JRob, Coach Mike and the rest of the staff. The guys mentioned above were all professionals on and off the field. As a fan I am glad they proudly called themselves Titans. My question is about the draft. What do you see our biggest need being in the 1st round? Offense or Defense? I kinda feel like there's maybe draft pick trade that might happen to acquire more picks in later rounds. There's alot of talent in all rounds this year. As always thank you so much!
Jim: Hey Chris. Good to hear from you again. And you're right – the Titans have said goodbye to some great pros on and off the field in the last few weeks. As for the draft, I look at the roster and see needs on the d-line, in the secondary, at back-up RB and depth and competition across the board, too. I'm expecting the team to add another QB at some point, too. What position does the first-round pick play? It's hard to say right now because we don't know what it going to happen in the next few weeks (what if Clowney is added or Logan Ryan is re-signed?) and we don't know who is going off the board before the Titans with picks 1-28. What is someone unexpectedly slides to 29? If I had to guess right now, and again this is subject to change, I'd put my money on a defensive lineman or a cornerback. But check back with me in a few weeks.
Have a great week everyone!
Here's the link to ask questions: CLICK HERE.