The Titans got hammered by a lot of fans for making little to no movement at the start of free agency, but we’re not yet a week in and they’ve brought in a veteran, Will Witherspoon, who should solve one of their three major issues.
WitherspoonI thought getting a veteran linebacker was a priority, because I envision Stephen Tulloch and Gerald McRath as starters in 2010 and thought the Titans needed a veteran leader, not a kid, in the third spot. They can afford to be younger at defensive end and cornerback.
Witherspoon fits the Titans free-agent mold: Not particularly expensive, athletic with upside, has quality experience.
He’s kind of bounced around. He was a third-round choice by Carolina out of Georgia in 2002 and has been with the Rams and Eagles.
I imagine he expects to settle in Nashville and play out the remainder of his prime.
Here’s Scouts Inc.’s assessment:
Witherspoon is an eight-year veteran who can play the ILB or OLB position. He is a quick read and react player whose lateral quickness and agility allow him to make a lot of plays inside out. He lacks true MLB size and strength however and is better when he can flow to the ball without having to take on contact. He has good burst, change of direction and acceleration to the ball. He breaks down quickly and can make sound tackles in space or in traffic. Witherspoon is quick enough to slip contact on his path to the ball but is inconsistent with his hand use and gets stuck when forced to take on a lot of OL contact. He has very good acceleration and speed to the perimeter. He is agile in space, can break down quickly and shows good body control. In coverage, he has very good awareness and instincts along with good solid range. He can get plenty of depth in his pass drops, read the QB and show good closing quickness to tackle. Overall, a solid starting LB who can play inside or outside if needed.