Titans 2018 tennessee titans Fantasy Preview

After eight painful years, the Titans made their triumphant return to the postseason in 2017. Third-year quarterback Marcus Mariota regressed, however, throwing only 13 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. Mariota's five rushing touchdowns salvaged some of his fantasy value and he finished as the QB18. The Titans' most valuable fantasy players were running backs DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry, who were the RB23 and RB25, respectively. Murray, the lead back, was inefficient for much of the season, averaging 3.6 yards per carry to Henry's 4.2. Henry would primarily be unleashed as the closer to finish out games when the Titans held leads in the fourth quarter. It was certainly an odd strategy, especially considering the praise Henry received throughout the season from his teammates. The Titans had a solid mix of veteran and youthful receivers, but none offered much fantasy value. Rishard Matthews led Tennessee wideouts with 795 yards and four touchdowns, which was a sizable decline from the year prior. Offseason signing Eric Decker and first-round pick Corey Davis are two of the main reasons for Matthews' dip in production. Decker corralled 54 receptions and Davis added 34. Davis' true emergence came in the AFC Divisional Game in New England where he grabbed two touchdowns on 63 receiving yards. Tight end Delanie Walker was Mariota's most reliable weapon, a solid TE1 (overall TE7) totaling 74 catches for 807 yards and three touchdowns.

22

Derrick
Henry

RB - Titans

FACT: The Titans were 6-1 (including playoffs) when Henry scored a touchdown (4-7 when he didn't). They were also 8-0 in games where he rushed for at least 50 yards (2-8 when he didn't).
Offseason Moves

When you make the playoffs for the first time since 2008, not many changes are expected. The Titans did the unexpected. Coach Mike Mularkey was fired and former Texans defensive coordinator Mike Vrabel took over the job. Vrabel brought in Matt LaFleur as the offensive coordinator after he helped transform the Rams' offense last season in the same position. The hope is that he can do the same for Marcus Mariota. DeMarco Murray retired and the Titans signed former Patriot Dion Lewis to play alongside Derrick Henry. Instead of the two-power back system they had last year, Lewis brings a change of pace with his quickness and elusiveness. At wide receiver, the Titans bring back most of the same players outside of Eric Decker, who they chose not to re-sign. Rishard Matthews and Corey Davis will be the top-two wideouts.

Sleepers & Busts

Marcus Mariota has become a sleeper after the subpar year he put together in 2017. In 2016, the second-year pro ranked as the QB12 with 3,426 passing yards and 28 total touchdowns to nine interceptions. Last season, Mariota had 18 total touchdowns and 15 interceptions for just 3,232 yards (overall QB18). But with a new head coach and offensive coordinator, Mariota is poised for a huge year. Matt LaFleur, Tennessee's new offensive coordinator, led the Rams' offensive turnaround last season and was the quarterbacks coach for the 2016 Atlanta Falcons. Some might remember Matt Ryan won NFL MVP and led that team to the Super Bowl. Mariota's passing ability combined with the threat to run (five rushing touchdowns in 2017) makes him a dangerous fantasy player to overlook.

Corey Davis arrived in the 2017 postseason. A rookie with two touchdowns in the AFC Divisional Game on the road in Foxborough? That's a No. 1 receiver going forward. Rishard Matthews, on the other hand, struggled late in the season as Davis' confidence increased. Matthews finished the playoffs with four catches for 42 yards in two games. This came after a regular season where he had 150 fewer receiving yards and five fewer touchdowns than in 2016. It seems a lot like Matthews is going to be taking a back seat in Davis' car this season. Matthews is a respectable No. 2 wideout in reality, but in fantasy he will struggle to be a reliable flex option.

Fantasy Depth Chart
POSFIRSTSECONDTHIRDOTHER
QB Marcus Mariota Blaine Gabbert
RB Derrick Henry Dion Lewis David Fluellen
WR Corey Davis Rishard Matthews Taywan Taylor Tajae Sharpe
TE Delanie Walker Jonnu Smith
K Ryan Succop