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2023 NFL Draft - Round 1

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If you were tired of the Anthony Richardson-Will Levis debates leading up to last week’s NFL Draft, you might want to brace yourself for life with him in the AFC South.

As with any draft choice when two prospects that fill a need are available, their careers will be forever intertwined. The “What If” game will always be played and that was guaranteed to happen once the Colts chose Richardson over Levis.

When the Tennessee Titans traded up in the 2nd Round to draft Levis, however, this storyline reached another level entirely. Now, not only will Colts fans have Richardson’s play to judge if the right move was made, but they will also battle twice a year against the quarterback they could have had.

I’ve been clear on my stance that the Colts made the right decision in drafting Richardson but I’d be lying if I told you I wasn’t surprised Levis ended up with the Titans, especially since they passed on him at #11 in the 1st round.

Yet, it makes sense for a team in desperate need of a replacement for Ryan Tannehill. As respectable as Tannehill’s tenure in Tennessee (say that ten times fast) has been, the championship window (if there ever was one) for that version of the Titans is closed.

They traded away his best wide receiver (AJ Brown) during last year’s draft and have selected potential QB replacements in consecutive drafts (Malik Willis, Levis). He’s turning 35 in two months and is on the final year of his current contract. In other words, the writing is on the wall that this is his final go around in Nashville.

He’s worthy of one last ride in Tennessee though…right?

Enter Will Levis, the name most Colts fans are thrilled to not have anywhere near their team. The biggest selling point for Levis was that he’s “pro ready” and has one of the best floors in the 2023 class. We’ve all seen the highlights, there’s no doubt he has a bigger arm than Tannehill.

Combine all that together. Why couldn’t he beat Ryan Tannehill out for the starting job?

Is that a realistic possibility for the Titans or is the plan to have him be the backup out of the gate?

Tuesday on The Fan Midday Show we asked that and more to Joe Rexrode, senior writer covering the Titans for The Athletic.

Over the course of our chat Joe talked about:

  • how Titans fans feel about the team drafting Will Levis
  • why Tennessee decided to draft Levis
  • how Tannehill’s comments about Levis compare to last year when the team took Malik Willis
  • if Levis could compete for the starting job
  • the future for Ryan Tannehill

Listen to the full conversation with Joe Rexrode of The Athletic below and catch The Fan Midday Show, weekdays 12-3pm Eastern, on 93.5 & 107.5 The Fan.

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