Harold Landry

Harold Landry has 4.5 sacks in five games for the Titans this year after having just 5.5 sacks in 2020.

It isn't hard to see the impact that Harold Landry is having for the Tennessee Titans.

With two more sacks Sunday against Jacksonville, Landry now has 4.5 sacks in the first five games of 2021. But Landry has been far more disruptive than just those 4.5 sacks. He has had numerous quarterback pressures, and even near misses that have altered the course of a lot of offensive pass plays against the Titans.

Coach Mike Vrabel even said that Landry's best rush of the day against the Jaguars resulted in Trevor Lawrence escaping the rush on a scramble, but he likes the presence that Landry has had in the opposing pocket thus far this eason.

“I think the pressure has always been there. Sometimes you get the sack numbers in different ways, but I think there has been pressure there. It has been good to see him – his best rush yesterday didn’t result in a sack or any statistical kind of thing. It ended up in a quarterback scramble where Denico (Autry) tried to hammer the ball out and the quarterback gained probably eight yards, but I think it was his best move,” Vrabel said of Landry. “He bent, he cornered, and he reached with that far arm, it just happened that the quarterback was able to step up. That is pass rushing in a nutshell. Your best move doesn’t end up being anything that statistically could be measured. Harold (Landry III) is playing well, he is playing fast, he has a good understanding. We ask him to do a lot, we put him in a lot of different positions, and he has responded well.”

The sacks that Landry has been getting cannot be ignored, and with his contract set to expire at the end of the season, the Titans will have a tough decision to make. Other players who entered the final years of their contracts without an extension have left Tennessee for bigger deals elsewhere in free agency. Jack Conklin, Corey Davis and Jonnu Smith are the three best examples of guys the Titans drafted, groomed and waited on to produce, but could not hang onto once their rookie deals were up.

In the meantime, Vrabel and the Titans continue to enjoy Landry's production and hope that it continues throughout the season. Landry had just 5.5 sacks a year ago, just one ahead of his current total this year. He is on pace to shatter his prevous single season high of nine sacks set in 2019.

“I think that Harold has played well for us, continuing to play well, he is an important part of this football team. I have always enjoyed coaching him,” Vrabel said. “I think he is conscientious, I think he is smart, I think he tries to improve, he studies the game, he has a good relationship with his teammates, whether we are asking him to do different things or align in different positions. I am not really sure what that was last year or the year before, but he has played well for us here early in the season and we will need that to continue to need that.”