There comes that moment in every player’s career when their time with the team is over and a new guy’s time begins. There are a number of reasons for this to happen, ranging from age and injuries to salary and production. It’s inevitable to avoid and gets even the best of players. In Tennessee, father time caught up with veteran OLB Brian Orakpo and he’s decided to call it quits after ten seasons in the league. He had a very productive career, starting in Washington and ending as a Titan. Orakpo recorded sixty-six sacks over his career, which was 104th all time. He was a pure bull rusher who could convert speed to power, but injuries forced him to retire.
His bookend mate, Derrick Morgan, is also on his way out of Nashville. He just finished the last year of his recent four-year, $27 million deal with the Titans and will now hit the free agent market in March. Derrick has spent all nine seasons of his career in Tennessee, recording forty-four and a half sacks during that time. He never had the gaudy numbers as a pass rusher, usually around six to seven per year, but did have a career-best nine back in 2016. There just won’t be a big market or contract offers for him, but there will be interest for a veteran OLB. Once the bigger names in free agency have signed, that’s when teams still needing pass rush help will look to get him on the cheap side. This means he will have to wait until the second or third wave in free agency to begin before he starts to receive any major interest from teams. If he’s willing to be a backup or role player, then he definitely can help a team in need of pass rushing.
With both of their starting OLB’s gone, the Titans were smart to be prepared for this when they drafted Harold Landry, in the 2nd round and the 41st overall pick in last years draft. They drafted the rookie pass rusher from Ohio St to be the be their guy of the future. While I’m sure they thought it would be soon, not sure they were thinking this year. Orakpo’s retirement was kind of a surprise. But with no clear competition ahead of him on the depth chart and the flashes of potential that Landry showed as a rookie, the Titans are ready for him to take over. While he played mostly as a backup, he did get to start three games. On the season he recorded forty-four tackles, with four and a half sacks and 14 quarterback pressures. He showed right away that he could provide a pass rush at a high level. As I mentioned he got three starts, and they came in the last three games of the season. In those games, he tallied eight tackles, two sacks, and six QB pressures. They drafted Landry for the future, but the future is now. He’s going to a be a huge piece for the Titans to build around. As for the fantasy world, Landry is a must-own in IDP dynasty leagues or deep roster leagues. Now is the time to get your shares of him, while they are still fairly cheap. I also believe he will be an intriguing play in IDP redraft leagues, especially if your league scores sacks heavily.
Thanks for reading my article and, if enjoyed it, you can read more of my articles at dynastyfootballfactory.com. You can also follow me on social media, on Twitter at Hollywood@DFF_DWin, on Facebook on my IDPNation page, on Reddit in the fantasy football IDP sub I’m user KingTitan1 and you can tune in each week and listen to the IDP EdgeCrushers podcast that I co-host. Feel free to hit me up with any questions that you have, as I’m always glad to help fellow IDPers. #IDPNation