By MIKE PATTON | Nashville Voice
The Tennessee Titans entered the offseason with some questions. One question was answered with the retirement of Brian Orakpo, clearing the way for Harold Landry III to start next season at outside linebacker.
One other question facing the Titans is how they will improve on its 25th-ranked offense. The return of All-Pro tight end Delanie Walker will help, but the Titans also thought another year of Matt LaFleur paired with Marcus Mariota could make a difference.
Well, now we will never know as word has come that LaFleur has accepted the head coaching position with the Green Bay Packers, pairing him with future NFL Hall of Famer Aaron Rodgers.
With LaFleur gone after one season, where do the Titans turn next for their offensive coordinator?
Right now there are not many names being mentioned, but one that could be talked about as the new offensive coordinator is Mark Helfrich. Currently, Helfrich is the offensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears and he has been a part of that offense’s growth this season.
While the Bears offense wasn’t exactly explosive in terms of their rank in the NFL, they were able to make plays and put pressure on defenses. That type of offensive coordinator ingenuity is needed for the Titans and along with the creativeness, the symmetry is there between Helfrich and the Titans.
Before Helfrich joined the NFL, he was the head coach and offensive coordinator at the University of Oregon.
One quarterback he got to coach for a few years out at Oregon was Marcus Mariota. He helped mold him into the quarterback that would become the second overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft.
Pairing these two together would allow for Marcus to feel comfortable in an offense he ran in college. The offensive change would also mean more tempo for the offense, which would create mismatches.
A guy like Taywan Taylor would benefit tremendously in this offense as he has skills that would fit right into what Helfrich wants to do with the quick-hitting and gadget plays.
Helfrich would be a good candidate, but another potential candidate for offensive coordinator is a guy who was out of the NFL last season. Derrell Bevell was the guy behind the Seattle offensive gameplans each week up until last season when he was fired.
Bevell had the Seahawks playing well under his leadership offensively and he was responsible for helping mold Russell Wilson on the field and creating an offense that showcased his mobility and his arm talent.
Marcus Mariota is not Russell Wilson, but both are mobile quarterbacks that can throw the football well at times—Wilson is more accurate, of course.
With the focus of Bevell’s offense being the running game and having the quarterback make plays off that along with running the quarterback in designed plays, Bevell could have the Titans’ offense looking better than it was last season.
And also he would inherit a better offensive line than he had in Seattle, where they turned former defensive linemen and former basketball players into offensive linemen. The combination of Bevell and Mariota could provide some better play from Mariota and also provide some explosion on the scoreboard.
These two candidate’s names have not currently been mentioned, but they could potentially make the Titans offense better.
And, even more importantly, they would be good coordinators to accentuate the talents of Mariota as a passer, athlete, and playmaker. It will be interesting to see which direction the Titans go.