Tag:Mike Heimerdinger
Posted on: April 14, 2011 12:57 pm

Offseason Checkup: Tennessee Titans

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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Posted on: February 8, 2011 8:35 am
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Posted on: February 8, 2011 8:35 am
Edited on: February 8, 2011 1:58 pm

Munchak fires Heimerdinger

Mike Munchak hasn't committed to keeping Mike Heimerdinger on Tennessee's staff (Getty). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

UPDATED (1:42 p.m.): Well, apparently Mike Munchak thought he could do better than Mike Heimerdinger as the offensive coordinator.

The Tennessean’s Jim Wyatt is reporting that Heimerdinger has been fired.

Said Heimerdinger: "Mike is going to do what is best for Titans. I know it is part of the business."

UPDATED (1:53 p.m.): Various reports are suggesting Munchak could be after Texans OL coach Bruce Matthews. Apparently, the two are best friends, and even though Matthews recently received a two-year extension from Houston, he hadn't signed it. That means the Titans didn't need to ask the Texans for permission to interview him.


If new Titans coach Mike Munchak wants to keep offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger as a Tennessee assistant, Heimerdinger would be completely fine with that.

Munchak was the former OL coach who then leap-frogged Heimerdinger – who also interviewed for Jeff Fisher’s old spot – for the top position. But Heimerdinger said he was happy for Munchak, telling the Tennessean, “I’d be happy to work under (Munchak). I think he does an excellent job.”

So, that’s settled, right? Munchak has an offensive coordinator if he wants him, and he can go about getting the rest of his staff assembled.

Except it sounds like Munchak isn’t sure he wants to keep Heimerdinger.

At a news conference Monday, Munchak was asked if he’d retain Heimerdinger, who’s been the offensive coordinator the past three seasons and he said, “Right now, to me anything is open. To me, we’re starting fresh. It’s not the same old, same old. I think we come in, figure out what’s best for the Titans going forward with what we have and just go from there … Anything is possible.”

Last season, the Titans finished 27th in total offense, though in 2009, they were 12th.

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Category: NFL
Posted on: February 4, 2011 11:52 am
Edited on: February 4, 2011 11:53 am

New Titans coach won't make Jeff Fisher money

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Are the Titans planning to lowball their new coach? It certainly seems that way if you read this Titans Insider piece in which Terry McCormick writes that the new Tennessee coach should expect to be paid about $2.5 million a season.

Considering Jeff Fisher would have made about $6.5 million per year, this newest figure doesn’t sound quite so special.

Unless former Bills head coach Mike Mularkey wins the job, the rest of the candidates (Titans OL coach Mike Munchak, Tiatans offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger and Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell) would be first-time head coaches.

Thus, it makes sense that owner Bud Adams could get away with paying them much less than Fisher and why former coaches like Bill Cowher and Jon Gruden were never in consideration for the Titans job.

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Posted on: February 1, 2011 7:46 pm

Heimerdinger's cancer not discussed in interview

Posted by Andy Benoit

Another Titans assistant has emerged as a candidate to fill Jeff Fisher’s vacant head coach post: Mike HeimerdingeM. Heimerdinger (US Presswire)r. John Glennon of the Tennessean reported Tuesday that the veteran offensive coordinator recently became the second candidate to interview for the job.

“I got in there, I got to say what I had to say and that’s about all you can ask for,” Heimerdinger said. “So you give it a shot and see if they like you. Getting in the door is the most important thing and then we’ll go from there.”

Heimerdinger has been with the club eight seasons total, including the last three. He was diagnosed with cancer this past season but did not miss any games. Heimerdinger said he’s “still feeling good” and the subject of his cancer did not come up in the interview.

Other candidates still have to interview. Glennon believes former Cardinals head coach Dave McGinnis could be next, as well as former Cowboys (and Titans) receiver coach Ray Sherman. Sherman’s interview would satisfy the Rooney Rule.

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Posted on: December 28, 2010 11:48 am

Hot Routes 12.28.10: Bengals logo = urinal?

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

- All kinds of live coverage from Monday Night’s Falcons-Saints game. You’ve got my blog posts discussing whether Atlanta can recover after losing its homefield immortality and whether coach Mike Smith made the right call in punting on fourth-and-six late in the game. Also, check out Pete Prisco’s column from the Saints locker room, particularly on the need for some New Orleans defensive players to “piss” on the Falcons logo.

- Remember when that Nevada woman sued Ben Roethlisberger in July 2009 for allegedly sexual assaulting her in Lake Tahoe (we refer to this as Roethlisberger alleged incident No. 1) ? Yeah, that lawsuit is still open, and it’s not exactly moving forward at a fast pace.

- Cowboys QB Jon Kitna’s status is still unknown for the season finale against the Eagles. Which means we could get more of Stephen McGee.

- An update on Titans offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger’s treatment for cancer. He’s going through a second round of chemotherapy.

- Happy two-year anniversary to Brett Favre and Jenn Sterger!

- See if you can follow the logic of Jerry Jones not wanting to hire a coach who’s already won a Super Bowl. I’m not sure I get it.

- Baltimore Sun columnist Mike Preston thinks Troy Smith’s career in the NFL might be over after the QB heatedly argued with former 49ers coach Mike Singletary on the sidelines Sunday.

- Who’s been the hero for the Vikings the past couple weeks? Why it’s director of operations/team travel Luther Hippe.

- Chiefs fans are EXCITED about buying playoff tickets.

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Posted on: December 3, 2010 4:29 pm

Heimerdinger returns to Titans practice

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

On Wednesday, Titans offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger, diagnosed last week with cancer, started chemotherapy treatment. On Friday, he was back at practice.

If he can’t call plays Sunday vs. Jacksonville, that duty will fall to quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains. As far as the rest of the game for Heimerdinger?

“We have a plan,” Fisher said, via the Tennessean. "We’ll discuss it (publicly) after the ballgame.”

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Posted on: November 28, 2010 1:16 pm
Edited on: November 28, 2010 2:39 pm

Heimerdinger in the press box

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

According to CBS Sports’ Charlie Casserly, Titans offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger, who was diagnosed with cancer this week, will coach today from the press box.

"He is going to coach today, call the plays like he normally does and begin chemotherapy treatment, outpatient treatment," Casserly said on CBS’ NFL Today. "He told me he wants to continue to work with the Titans throughout this treatment. He said, 'I really don't know if I can do that, it all depends on what energy level I have.'"

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com