Titans At A Crossroads: Time To Make Critical Decisions

By MIKE HERNDON, columnist

For much of the 2023 offseason, it felt like Ran Carthon and Mike Vrabel were trying to thread the needle between competing in 2023 while also setting the table for a future beyond this season, one that likely doesn’t include some of the central figures from this spurt of success since 2019.

Will Levis
  Will Levis/ Angie Flatt

Carthon reportedly had discussions about trading Derrick Henry early in the offseason and the new GM was careful not to do too much restructuring of current deals to preserve a war chest of cap space that is waiting for him in 2024. He also traded up to select Will Levis in the second round and then took Tyjae Spears in the third, clear heirs for the Ryan Tannehill-Henry backfield duo that helped win back-to-back division titles in 2020 and 2021.

However, they ultimately decided to keep their expensive core veterans – including Kevin Byard and Denico Autry along with Tannehill and Henry – while adding DeAndre Hopkins. To make room for Hopkins, they did borrow from that 2024 cap allotment via Harold Landry’s restructured contract. Those were all moves aimed at competing for a division title in 2023.

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