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Blog Entry

Offseason Checkup: Tennessee Titans

Posted on: April 14, 2011 12:57 pm
 
Posted by Josh Katzowitz



Eye on Football's playing doctor for every NFL team with our Offseason Check-ups.



The Titans are in need of an overhaul, which is exactly what they’ll be getting this year (whether they want it or not). Long-time coach Jeff Fisher is gone, replaced by his former OL coach, Mike Munchak. Defensive coordinator Chuck Cecil is gone, replaced by Jerry Gray.

So is offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger, replaced by Chris Palmer. So is QB Vince Young, replaced by, um, who exactly?

You might have forgotten this, but at one point last season, Tennessee was 5-2. Then, the Titans lost eight of their final nine games of the season to finish the season on a disastrous note. A note that signified that the organization needs a makeover and fast.




New coaching staff

The end of Fisher’s tenure in Tennessee was awfully strange. Though it seemed like owner Bud Adams thought about picking Young over Fisher, he actually didn’t. He wanted Fisher to stay, and Fisher agreed to return. Until he didn’t, changing his mind and resigning his position. Which means that the Titans are going through a wholesale change, and considering the lockout is preventing the staff from meeting with the players, Tennessee will have a tough time catching up.

One of the biggest losses to the team, though, was when DL coach Jim Washburn left for Philadelphia. Jason Babin – who made his first Pro Bowl last season – was really upset with the transition, because he knows how much Washburn tutored him. Washburn also helped develop Albert Haynesworth, Kyle Vanden Bosch and Antwan Odom, and his loss will be felt, especially if Babin leaves via free agency.




1. Quarterback
Young is gone, and though he compiled a 26-13 record and two Pro Bowl appearances in his five seasons with the Titans, a clean break from the organization clearly was needed. So, who to replace him? Kerry Collins, but he’s 38 years old. Rusty Smith, but he’ll be a second-year player with only one start of experience. So, where do you go next? Backup Brett Ratliff? I don’t think so.

2. Interior Offensive Line
LG Leroy Harris and C Eugene Amano struggled last season – one reason RB Chris Johnson’s numbers weren’t as good as he expected. Harris is still young, so the Titans might continue to use him, but Johnson might be appreciative if the Tennessee played somebody else at LG and C. RG Jake Scott, meanwhile, is solid and dependable.

3. Defensive Tackle
When the Titans talked about trading back for Albert Haynesworth last season, you know they were desperate for another DT. Thus, the Titans have to be loving the recent supposed drop in value of Auburn DT Nick Fairley. Although the undersized Jason Jones is quite a strong player at one DT spot, Fairley could add big talent to the defensive line if he’s still available for the Titans to draft at No. 8.




Is there optimism for the Titans next season? I don’t see how. Not after they lost their quarterback and then hired a head coach who’s never even been a coordinator to lead the team. Munchak, a pro football Hall of Famer because of his playing skills, is well-respected inside the game, but it might take a year or two to turn around the organization that, let’s face it, was left in total disarray.

And while we can say the AFC South isn’t necessarily going to be dominated by the Colts next season, I’d put the Jaguars and Texans ahead of Tennessee in the race for the division crown. By far.

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Comments
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 3, 2012 5:32 pm
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 5, 2011 6:55 am
 

Offseason Checkup: Tennessee Titans

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Since: Nov 8, 2010
Posted on: April 15, 2011 3:09 pm
 

Offseason Checkup: Tennessee Titans

Even as a Titans fan, I don't see them being contenders next year, but I also do not think it's as bad as people make it seem. Our defense has good talent at most positions, with injuries being the main issue last year. If they can get Fairley and perhaps an LB in the 3rd round, I think our personnel could be in pretty good shape. It's just a matter of what D-coordinator Gray can do with them. On the offense, I believe the Titans could get a good QB in the second round (or maybe trade into the later first round if QBs are available) and perhaps a little young help on the O-line. Again, a big part of their productivity will be new O-coordinator Palmer's success with the personnel he's given. If the Titans can make a couple strong moves/picks in the draft and offseason, and the coaching staff can pull the potential out of their younger players, the Titans have a good shot to improve over last year. I'm not hopeful for a playoff berth by any means, but I do not think that 8-8 would be out of the question. 



Since: Jan 22, 2007
Posted on: April 14, 2011 6:35 pm
 

Offseason Checkup: Tennessee Titans

I agree this will be a very long and difficult rebuilding propostion.  It will essentially be a whole new team.  New coaches, new QB, and alot of different players.  It will be very interesting to see what they can get done in the draft and through free agency.  This will be a monumental effort which I'm sure will take many unexpected twists and turns.



Since: Dec 11, 2006
Posted on: April 14, 2011 3:00 pm
 

Offseason Checkup: Tennessee Titans

The Titans are now in a multi year rebuilding process...and there's no guarantee they will succeed, at all.  Coaching staff is totally unproven, quarterback is a complete unknown, and there are holes almost everywhere.  Maybe why Fisher ended up opting out.  There's alot of time and energy required to right this ship.  Fisher's no spring chicken anymore.  The new coaching staff is a pure roll of the dice.


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