The Tennessee Titans announced on Monday that tight ends coach Arthur Smith has been promoted to offensive coordinator.
Arthur Smith is the #Titans new OC
— Terry McCormick (@terrymc13) January 21, 2019
Smith, who has been with the franchise since 2011, took over as tight ends coach midway through the 2015 season.
The promotion of Smith is sure to be met with some skepticism, simply because he will be a first time offensive coordinator/play caller.
But to be completely fair, there’s no way to tell how Smith will fare as an offensive coordinator. There have been plenty of young, first time offensive coordinators that have excelled. And there have been plenty that have failed.
For what it’s worth, Titans left tackle Taylor Lewan is completely on board with the hire.
I remember my first couple of years chasing you down in pursuit drills and literally trying to put you in the hospital. There isn’t one person more deserving of being our OC congratulations Coach! Can’t wait for you to lead us to a Super Bowl pic.twitter.com/V4a4yzypZy
— Taylor Lewan (@TaylorLewan77) January 21, 2019
I think Lewan’s endorsement of Smith should be enough for Titans fans to feel encouraged by Smith’s promotion. The players know better than anyone if a coach has what it takes to be an offensive coordinator. And Lewan, along with the rest of the Titans’ offense, has seen a litany of play callers come and go. If he thinks Smith can be successful in Nashville, then we should probably take his word for it.
Lewan, by the way, isn’t the only Titan who approves of the hire.
Here’s what Delanie Walker had to say about Smith’s promotion (via Titans Online):
I would say he’s a great hire,” Walker said of Smith. “The guy has worked on defense, offense, and he’s been in every room. He knows the game, he studies his butt off and I know he is going to be a great OC. I am going to do everything in my power to make sure I can provide for him and make sure he is successful.
2019 will be a pivotal year for the future of the Titans. This will be the season that will determine whether or not Marcus Mariota has a long-term future in Tennessee.
Perhaps Smith will be the offensive coordinator that finally helps Mariota put it all together.
Featured image via Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports