What was smoking, the tire or the brakes?
As for your test with the truck jacked up. It is common for one wheel to spin more freely than the other while both wheel are of the ground and the engine running. Just a function of the differential. With the trans in neutral could you turn the passenger side wheel by hand? That would require some effort but you it should turn as apposed to a mechanical drag.
Did you check the tire pressure with a tire gauge? Especially the inside tire.
WBCCI 12156 AIR 3144 WACHUNG TAC NJ6
2004 Excursion 4x4
1991 34 ft. Excella +220,000 miles, new laminated flooring, new upholstery, new 3200 lbs axles