Epic Debut for Will Levis Changes Titans' Tone

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The best quarterback ever to wear the Houston Oilers oil derrick logo was at Nissan Stadium, one of an expected 170 franchise alumni expected to watch the Titans play the Falcons in throwback uniforms.

Warren Moon may have seen the organization's next great quarterback's debut, with Will Levis wearing the same threads while throwing four touchdowns in his NFL debut, a 28-23 win.

"Very impressive performance by Will in his first start," Moon told me by text. "He showed great poise in the pocket, nice pace and command of the huddle and showed off his big arm several times for explosive plays. Excellent confidence booster game for Will and the team."

Oct 29, 2023; Nashville, Tennessee, USA; Tennessee Titans quarterback Will Levis (8) throws a pass just before getting hit by Atlanta Falcons defensive tackle David Onyemata (90) during the second half at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports
Will Levis/ © Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports

Did Levis remind Moon, a Pro Football Hall of Famer of anybody?

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PK TV: Titans 28, Falcons 23

Titans 28, Falcons 23NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The conversation has changed.

There remains a lot wrong with the Tennessee Titans, but we all know what a great performing quarterback can do for a franchise and boy did Will Levis alter a lot.

As the third quarterback in league history to throw four touchdowns in his first game, Levis paced the Titans to a 28-23 win over the Falcons, impressing a home crowd, a TV audience and as many as 170 franchise alumni who watched some effortless deep balls settle into the hands of DeAndre Hopkins and Nick Westbrook-Ikhine.

Many of our post-game chats have been vent sessions. This time around I was impressed I didn't have to hold you back from sizing Levis for a gold jacket and measuring his face for a bronze bust.

There is plenty of reason for excitement as a new era kicks off and we discussed all that and a lot more.

Check out a quality re-watch at the private Facebook page or on YouTube below.

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Titans against Falcons: Key Matchups and Predictions

Titans against Falcons: Key Matchups and Predictions

By BLAKE BEDDINGFIELD, special correspondent
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Over the bye week the Titans front office decided to explore the trade market and found at least one player with value to other teams around the league. All-Pro safety Kevin Byard was traded to the Eagles for fifth and sixth-round picks as well as safety Terrell Edmunds.

Aug 12, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Tennessee Titans quarterback Will Levis (8) looks to pass in the second half against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports
Will Levis/ © Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

This is exactly what this front office needed to do to start the rebuilding process of this roster, but the trading shouldn’t stop until all expiring contracts and players that aren’t in the 2024 plan are shopped.  
The other piece of news that should be exciting for the Titans is that second-round pick Will Levis will reportedly start at quarterback versus the Falcons.
What can Will Levis bring to the team?

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Podcast: Sorting Through The Titans' QB Situation

Podcast: Sorting Through The Titans' QB Situation

The Paul Kuharsky PodcastNASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Mike Vrabel has created quarterback confusion this week, which is his goal.

It;'s worked on the fan base. The question is, has it worked on the Falcons? Vrabel wants Atlanta to spend time preparing for Ryan Tannehill, Will Levis and Malik Willis.

So the coach has left open the possibility of Tannehill playing two weeks after he suffered a high right ankle sprain. If he can't go, Vrabel is talking about going so far as to rotate the two young quarterbacks.

It's a wildly unpopular idea.

One would imagine if the Titans really did that, they'd have stuff built in to feature Levis, more of a pocket passer, and Willis, more of a runner. But Levis said they can both do the same things and it's the same plan for both.

I think we need to reserve judgment. It's fine to hash through all the talk and how things are handled now. But let's see what the Titans actually do before we indict Vrabel's plan.

We start the new episode of The Paul Kuharsky Podcast considering Levis.

It awaits you on Apple, Spotify, Google Podcasts, TuneIn, iHeart and YouTube, which is below.

We also delve into:

  • Compensatory draft picks
  • The limits on dropback passing
  • The best-case scenario for the rest of the season
  • Mike Vrabel's weekend in New England
  • Kevin Byard's forecast in Philadelphia

The podcast is the front door to PaulKuharsky.com. Step right in.

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With Titans' Kevin Byard Trade, Future Coming Into Focus

With Titans' Kevin Byard Trade, Future Coming Into Focus

By MIKE HERNDON, columnist

The Titans have flirted with a rebuild over the last 12 months, starting with getting rid of Jon Robinson and then continuing with a trade up for quarterback Will Levis in the draft. However, they hadn’t fully committed to prioritizing their future at the expense of their present. That is, until Monday when they shipped two-time All-Pro safety Kevin Byard to the Eagles for safety Terrell Edmunds and 2024 fifth and sixth-round picks.

Kevin Byard
  Kevin Byard/ courtesy Tennessee Titans

While I understand fans’ emotional attachment to Byard, a homegrown star who was exemplary in every way during his time in Tennessee, I also believe this is a move that had to be made. I’ll explain why before we jump into what this means for the Titans moving forward as well.

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If Titans' Ryan Tannehill Is Out, Both Young QBs Will Play -- But It's Got To Be Mostly Will Levis

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- If Ryan Tannehill can't go Sunday, Mike Vrabel said he'd anticipate both young Titans' quarterbacks will play against the Falcons on Sunday.

When you have two you don't have one.

Will Levis
  Will Levis/ Angie Flatt

But surely this can't be an every-other-series sort of scenario.

The best that can come of it is Levis being the primary guy with packages for Willis to enter the game as a change-up with options to run the ball, which is where he is most dangerous. [Unlocked] 


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The Indispensable Titans

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – With Kevin Byard gone, the Titans could be trading some additional veterans.

Whether they do or not, it’s a good time to assess the roster.

Tyjae Spears
  Tyjae Spears/ Angie Flatt

Who HAS to be here for the long term? Who would be left standing if you did an imaginary tear down to the studs? Who are the indispensable Titans?

Here’s my list:

1)    Jeffery Simmons: He’s not played great the last few games, but he’s the Titans' biggest foundational piece. At his best he’s a player offenses have to worry about on every play, disrupting pass plays from the inside and tracking every run play.

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We Discussed Titans' Trade Of Kevin Byard

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- What better coping mechanism as you come to terms with the departure of No. 31 than a Monday Night Football halftime chat?

We got it done and it makes for a quality rewatch even if you were not able to join us.

Kevin Byard is off to the Eagles in exchange for fifth- and sixth-round draft picks and safety Terrell Edmunds and the Titans may be at the start of an attempted fire sale. 

PK TV: Kevin ByardIt's the healthy thing for the organization to do, as next year's price structure versus Byard's production was not going to allow for a 2024 cap hit north of $14 million. 

But that doesn't mean it's easy for fans who've loved a player for eight years to watch him leave and to come to terms with where the organization is. And that's not in a good place at all.

Elijah Molden has missed two games already this season, including Week Six with a hamstring issue. Will he be ready to return and assume Byard's slot next to Amani Hooker on Sunday when the season resumes against Atlanta? If not we could see Dane Cruikshank off the practice squad, undrafted rookie Matthew Jackson or a quick move to Edmunds.

And who's next if the Titans continue to trade? It takes a willing partner and the rest of the Titans on the list -- outside of DeAndre Hopkins -- all have something that makes them not worth as much as Byard was.

We sorted through it all on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube (which is also below). Check it out.

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