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Mariota & Company Have Pieces To Be Special

The Tennessee Titans went through a lot of effort to remake an offense that underwhelmed last season. The team traded for DeMarco Murray, spent yet another first-round pick on an offensive lineman and drafted Derrick Henry in the second round. New head coach Mike Mularkey has let it beknown that he wants to get back to smash-mouth football.

The future looks bright in Music City, as Marcus Mariota could be the best starting quarterback the Titans have fielded since Steve McNair. However, he is still completely devoid of a credible receiver to throw the ball to and has a tendency to run because of it.

Super Bowl +7500

Will the Titans win the Super Bowl? No. Moving on.

AFC Championship +5000

The Titans have the pieces to make a splash this season, as their defense is good enough to get by and the offense should make strides this season. Tennessee’s defense finished in the top half in yards allowed last season but allowed 26.4 points per game, which means the offense gave up way too many turnovers.

That turnover number is likely to decrease this season with Mariota growing and sure-handed rushers in the backfield with Murray and Henry.

Does this mean the Titans win the AFC championship? No.

AFC South +800

The Titans have not won the AFC South since 2008 – a squad that featured Kerry Collins at quarterback and a running back duo of Chris Johnson and LenDale White. That year also happens to be the last time Tennessee posted a winning record within the division, as the team has gone 12-30 against AFC South opponents since.

The Titans are not exactly built to win immediately. Marcus Mariota is the franchise cornerstone, but will still need a year or two to fully realize his potential. The line is young and will likely suffer through some growing pains too. Add to that the growth the other teams in the division will likely see and an AFC South championship is not likely for Tennessee. 

OVER/UNDER Win Total 5.5

It may be hard to remember, but the Titans were a solid and respectable team just a few years ago. The team finished with six or more wins in eight consecutive seasons from 2006 to 2013. 

In order to ensure at least six wins this season, the Titans will need to reclaim some semblance of a home-field advantage. The Titans have posted a losing record at Nissan Stadium in each of their past four seasons with a collective 10-22 mark in that span.

Derrick Henry to Win NFL OROY +1600

Derrick Henry is in a good position to succeed this season, but what needs to happen in order to win the Offensive Rookie of the Year Award? The past two running backs to win the OROY were Todd Gurley and Adrian Peterson. Though both of those backs missed a couple games in their rookie campaigns, they averaged 90.5 rushing yards and 17 carries per game.

The offensive line in Tennessee will have three former first-round picks starting – including two on the right side – which means there is plenty of potential there. Titans’ running backs averaged 4.0 yards per carry, which was respectable considering the terrible runners they had.

Mariota has nobody to throw to, Murray has dealt with injuries his entire career and Mike Mularkey wants to run the ball. It’s a bit of a long shot, but Henry certainly holds value.

2016 Tennessee Titans Futures Odds
Super Bowl+7500
AFC Championship+5000
AFC South+800
Win Total5.5

Odds as of September 1 at Bovada