Tennessee Titans' 2019 free-agent signings: Saffold upgrades O-line

A breakdown of the Tennessee Titans' 2019 free-agent signings.

Rodger Saffold, offensive guard

The Titans are expected to sign Saffold to a four-year contract worth $44 million with $22.5 million guaranteed. Here’s a closer look at the veteran offensive lineman who spent the past nine seasons with the St. Louis/Los Angeles Rams:

What it means: Saffold is an instant upgrade to the Titans' interior offensive line. His experience in a similar scheme with the Rams under head coach Sean McVay should make for a smooth transition. Saffold is a bulldozing run-blocker, which fits nicely for a Titans team that wants to be physical and rely heavily on the ground game.

Adding guard Rodger Saffold is a major boost to the Titans offense. Saffold was 3rd among all guards in ESPN's Pass Block Win Rate (min. 300 blocks) powered by NFL Next Gen Stats last season. Saffold held his blocks for at least 2.5 seconds 87.4 percent of the time.

Turron Davenport, ESPN ago

Adam Humphries, wide receiver

The Titans are expected to sign Humphries to a four-year contract worth $36 million with $19 million guaranteed. Here’s a closer look at the veteran slot receiver who spent the past four seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers:

What it means: Humphries gives quarterback Marcus Mariota a reliable target in the slot who can create separation on underneath routes and work between the hashes to pick up the tough yards -- especially on third downs to keep the chains moving. He was a safety valve for quarterback Jameis Winston in Tampa. Humphries averaged 64 receptions and 690 yards receiving over the past three seasons. Humphries posted career highs with 74 receptions for 816 yards last year.

What’s the risk: Humphries was targeted 105 times last season. Although he caught 72.4 percent of those targets, Humphries might have been a beneficiary of the Buccaneers' passing attack that led the league with 320.3 passing yards per game. It's highly unlikely Humphries will get the same amount of targets in Tennessee. Can he still manage to be as productive with fewer targets?


Kenny Vaccaro, safety

The Titans on Monday agreed to a four-year deal with Vaccaro worth up to $26 million and with $11.5 million guaranteed. Here’s a closer look at the safety who spent last season with the Titans after being selected by the New Orleans Saints with the No. 15 pick in 2013:

What it means: Re-signing Vaccaro allows the Titans to have perhaps their best defensive tandem on the field again. The two safeties complemented each other, with Kevin Byard roaming in space and Vaccaro serving as a thumper in the box. Both were integral players in defensive coordinator Dean Pees' scheme, which relies heavily on the safeties getting everyone lined up and serving as the quarterbacks of the secondary. Re-signing Vaccaro comes as the team releases safety Johnathan Cyprien, saving $4.75 million in cap space.

What's the risk? Vaccaro is a proven player, but his rugged, self-sacrificing style of play could come with a cost. Vaccaro missed eight games over the past three years with injuries ranging from a dislocated elbow last season to a torn adductor muscle (inside of the thigh) and wrist surgery in 2017. He also injured his ankle in 2016.


Cameron Wake, defensive end

The Titans intend to sign Wake to a three-year contract worth $23 million that includes $10 million guaranteed. Here's a look at the defensive end who spent the last 10 seasons with the Miami Dolphins:

What it means: Wake is still capable of being an effective situational pass-rusher. At 37 years old, he's unlikely to play a high percentage of snaps. But he can maximize each of his reps as a part of a rotation for the Titans. The edge defender should bring a much-needed veteran presence to help Tennessee's young group of pass-rushers.

What's the risk? Wake's best days are behind him. His sack totals have gone from 11.5 in 2016 to 10.5 in 2017 to six sacks last year. Plus, he's coming off surgery; he underwent an arthroscopic procedure to remove cartilage from his knee last October.