The Facts: The Titans didn’t promote Arthur Smith to OC because he was the “easy” hire, an in-house coach they knew well. HC Mike Vrabel said Smith became the easy choice, however, because he was qualified and respected, and a perfect man for the job. And having Smith in charge of the offense in 2019 should make things easier for the Titans, and Mariota.
Diehards Line: As a result of Smith taking over, there won’t be wholesale changes for players to learn this offseason. “I think it’s what’s best for Marcus, and best for a lot of guys,” Vrabel said on Tuesday. “We make decisions that are for the best interest of the Titans, and Marcus is a huge part and so are all of our other players." Smith served as assistant TEs coach in 2014 and the early part of 2015 before being promoted to the team’s TEs coach in the second half of that season. He remained in that role until he was promoted on Monday. GM Jon Robinson said Smith is smart, and noted as TEs coach he was involved in the run game, and also in pass concepts. As for Mariota, who is headed into his fifth NFL season, the familiarity with Smith and the offense should help, Robinson said. The change at offensive coordinator will give Mariota his fifth play-caller heading into his fifth NFL season. “I think that is one thing that he won’t have to focus on -- learning a new playbook, learning new terminology,” Robinson said of Mariota. “He can focus on getting healthy, focus on immersing himself even more in the offense, and just going out there and playing quarterback.”