Titans tab Arthur Smith to be new offensive coordinator

Titans tab Arthur Smith to be new offensive coordinator

The Tennessee Titans announced Monday that they have promoted tight ends coach Arthur Smith to offensive coordinator.
Smith, who has been with the Titans organization since 2011, replaces Matt LaFluer, who departed two weeks ago to become the new head coach of the Green Bay Packers.
While Smith has never been a play-caller in his coaching career, he has worked his way up through the coaching ranks with the club since coming over from the Washington Redskins after the 2010 season. He has survived the firings of head coaches Mike Munchak, Ken Whisenhunt and Mike Mularkey by the Titans to be retained by the organization.
“I am excited for Arthur and for our team to be able to elevate a deserving coach,” said Titans head coach Mike Vrabel. “I was impressed throughout the season in gameplan meetings with his ideas, in-game with his understanding of situations and the ability to get the most out of his position group. We spent a good bit of time last week talking about this opportunity. He has a great deal of familiarity with our players and the continuity of the offense will allow our players to continue to develop and improve.”
Smith initially worked as the defensive quality control coach on Munchak’s first staff, but moved to the offensive side of the ball in 2012 in the same quality control capacity before assisting on the offensive line in 2013 and with tight ends in 2014-15.
When Whisenhunt was fired midway through the 2015 season, Mularkey, who had been tight ends coach, was named interim (and later full-time) head coach. Mularkey promoted Smith to the tight ends coach role, the positon he held even after Vrabel took over in 2018 as head coach.
Smith has helped to oversee the likes of Pro Bowl tight end Delanie Walker, who has blossomed into a star during his time with the Titans, before suffering a leg injury in the season opener that landed him on injured reserve.
With Smith’s promotion, the safe assumption is that the offensive scheme and terminology should stay the same for quarterback Marcus Mariota and young skill position players like Corey Davis, Taywan Taylor, Tajae Sharpe and Derrick Henry, all of whom have had to learn multiple systems since arriving in Tennessee.
That should help the offense maintain some semblance of continuity, as Mariota will be working with his fifth play-caller in as many seasons in the NFL next season, and is also entering the final year of his rookie contract and likely will have to make good in 2019 in order to earn an extension.
The one drawback to Smith’s promotion, however, is that he has not been a coordinator at any point in his coaching career, nor does he have any play-calling experience. That means Smith will be starting from square one and learning on the job in both of those capacities.

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