Why the Titans should Pursue Jadeveon Clowney
Since being drafted first overall in 2014, Jadeveon Clowney has made a significant impact on each team he has played on. Clowney, 27, has not lived up to #1 overall expectations according to many people but he has undoubtedly been a great player.
Clowney was traded to the Seahawks on August 31st, 2019, after 5 seasons with the Texans. The Seahawks have reportedly made multiple offers though Clowney doesn't seem too interested in returning to Seattle. A few other teams have also been in contact with Clowney, including the Tennessee Titans.
The Titans have not had a player with 10 sacks since Brian Orakpo in 2016. Jurrell Casey, who was one of the Titans most consistent pass rushers over the last decade, recorded at least 5 sacks in each of the last 7 seasons. Unfortunately, Casey was traded to the Broncos this offseason, likely to clear cap space.
This trade leaves an unfilled hole on the Titans defense. Pass rush has been a huge problem for the Titans for years and some argue the Titans' season ultimately ended because of their inability to get to Patrick Mahomes in the AFC Championship. While Casey's legacy will be very hard to replicate, Clowney has the ability to change games by himself. If Casey was traded and the Titans do not have a huge resulting move, like signing Clowney, it will be extremely disappointing. Casey was crucial to the Titans' pass rush and his absence could be detrimental.
In just 13 games last season, Clowney totaled 1 Interception (pick 6), 4 forced fumbles, 2 fumbles recovered (1 for TD), 3 sacks, 7 tackles for loss, and 13 QB Hits. While he didn't put up the sack totals he did in past seasons, Clowney was dominant. Even when he isn't recording sacks, Clowney draws constant double teams and he gains a lot of attention from opposing teams.
If Clowney were to sign with the Titans, it would not be a small contract. The Browns reportedly offered $15m per year though Clowney made it clear he did not want to sign with the Browns. He wants to sign with a contender, like the Titans. The Titans are a pass rusher away from being among the top teams in the NFL for years to come. The market for Clowney is crowded though the Titans have a strong possibility of landing him.
GM Jon Robinson said in a post-draft interview that the Titans had spoken to Clowney and that they would keep in contact with him. On June 11th, however, Robinson stated that "nothing was imminent" between Clowney and the Titans. It is likely that Clowney could wait to sign with a team until around training camp, ideally increasing his value. As of early April, Clowney was asking for $17m per season, which would make him one of the 30 highest payed players in the NFL. If the Titans were to sign him for anything less than $14m, it would be an incredible signing.
The Titans currently have $19m in cap space for this season after they opted not to resign Logan Ryan and Jack Conklin and traded away Jurrell Casey. The Titans have signed few free agents and just one pass rusher, making a Clowney signing more likely. Additionally, Coach Mike Vrabel has said nothing but positive things about Clowney as he coached him when he was the Defensive Coordinator with the Texans.
The Titans have been linked to Jadeveon Clowney for months, and signing him would greatly benefit the team. In an interview with NFL Network, Titans radio announcer, Mike Keith, said there is a "real possibility" Tennessee lands Clowney. While he comes with a hefty price tag, the value that Clowney could bring to the Titans is well worth the price.