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Titans WR Tyler Boyd feels Will Levis ‘did too much’ in rookie year: He can ‘rely more on his playmakers’ now

Tennessee Titans quarterback Will Levis had an up-and-down rookie season. 

His began his career with an electric four-touchdown performance against the Atlanta Falcons, but then threw just four touchdowns and four interceptions across his final eight starts. He had two games with a passer rating over 130, and three with a rating under 70. Levis took an astronomical 28 sacks through nine games, giving him a 9.9% sack rate. He had potential interceptions dropped at the highest rate among qualified passers, via Tru Media, but he also was the most aggressive quarterback in the NFL, ranking first in average depth of target, which helped him create explosive plays at the NFL’s third-highest rate (11% of his dropbacks resulted in a completion of at least 20 yards).

It’s difficult to figure how much of that was on Levis and how much was on the offensive infrastructure with which the Titans surrounded him. Tennessee had one of the thinnest pass-catching corps in the NFL, and arguably its worst offensive line in 2023. The team also played a conservative style of offense based around Derrick Henry, until it was trailing in games and then heaped more and more onto Levis’ shoulders.

Things will be different in 2024. The Titans have a new coaching staff led by Brian Callahan, the former offensive coordinator for the Bengals. They plan to be aggressive throwing the ball, and they reshaped their roster accordingly. They signed center Lloyd Cushenberry in free agency, along with running back Tony Pollard and wide receivers Calvin Ridley and Tyler Boyd, then drafted JC Latham to upgrade the line, which will now be coached by Callahan’s father: legendary O-line coach Bill Callahan. 

Boyd, for one, thinks all of those changes will be good for Levis’ development.

“I know he can go out there and play football,” Boyd said, via Sirius XM NFL Radio. “And another thing I know, he kind of probably went out there and did too much. But now he got playmakers. He got guys. I think he can cut it back a little bit, relax and just rely more on his playmakers.”

Adding Pollard, Ridley and Boyd to the incumbent Tyjae Spears, DeAndre Hopkins, Treylon Burks and Chigoziem Okonkwo now at least gives the Titans something resembling an NFL-caliber skill-position group. And that’s something Boyd is used to as well, from his time in Cincinnati.

“I’m kind of familiar with being in a room full of playmakers. Guys that can just go out there and flat-out play,” Boyd said, noting that he also knows the key to success for such a group. “I think the most important thing for the whole group is just to be unselfish.”

There are a lot of mouths to feed in the new-look Tennessee offense, and not everyone will necessarily get the volume of opportunities they are used to. But that’s a much better problem to have than the one the Titans had last year, where there simply wasn’t enough talent to field a viable offense.

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Author: Jared Dubin
June 10, 2024 | 12:20 pm

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