NFL Free Agency, Tennessee Titans

Would Jadeveon Clowney make the Titans a Super Bowl contender?

The Tennessee Titans were one game away from playing in the Super Bowl last season. Would signing Jadeveon Clowney further them as elite contenders?

Last year’s magical run for the Tennessee Titans was truly special.

After benching Marcus Mariota in favor of Ryan Tannehill, the team looked completely different. The offense exploded, and the team ended the season with a record of 7-3 with Tannehill as the full-time starter, earning a playoff berth.

After beating the New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens, they eventually fell short in the AFC Championship Game to the Kansas City Chiefs. Still, a tremendous effort.

With much of the team returning for 2020, would general manager Jon Robinson be putting his team over the top by adding free-agent edge rusher Jadeveon Clowney?

Clowney may have had only three sacks last season, but he’s a force against both the run and pass. A top-tier pass rusher’s impact can’t be overstated. The Denver Broncos’ Von Miller took over in the 2015 playoffs, harassing the likes of Tom Brady and Cam Newton, en route to being named Super Bowl MVP.

One can look at the San Francisco 49ers last season. Their pass-rush forced Patrick Mahomes to have the worst three quarters of his career before tiring out.

Clowney would unquestionably close the gap between the Titans and the Chiefs. If he were playing in the AFC championship Game last year, perhaps he makes a game-changing play. For example, the Titans had a pair of 10-point leads. Someone like Clowney can be ultra-aggressive in those spots, going for there haymaker.

In more of a general sense, having Clowney will obviously help throughout the season. In the division, Clowney would help contain Deshaun Watson when the Titans play the Houston Texans. He’d also be a great weapon against the Indianapolis Colts’ offensive line, arguably the league’s best.

By locking up Tannehill and bringing back Derrick Henry — at least for this season — it’s clear the Titans believe they can make another run. They were able to make it to the AFC Championship last year, but on paper, they are still a bit behind both the Ravens and Chiefs.

Adding Clowney might not change that truth, but it certainly closes the gap.

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