Nov 4, 2012; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans defensive end Derrick Morgan (91) leaves the field after the Chicago Bears scored a touchdown during the second half at LP Field. The Bears beat the Titans 51-20. Mandatory credit: Don McPeak-US Presswire

Could Rob Ryan Turn Around The Defense For The Tennessee Titans?


This is the only picture in existence of Rob Ryan smiling. Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

For those of you who haven’t heard, defensive coordinator Rob Ryan has officially been fired from his job in Dallas. The more abrasive of the Brothers Ryan (if you can believe that) has been bouncing across the NFL landscape for a little while now. After spending 5 years as the Raiders defensive coordinator from the 2004 – 2008 seasons, he went to run the defense in Cleveland. However, after 2 years, the team decided to move on, and the Dallas Cowboys hired him…for 2 years.

With Rob Ryan now out of a job for about probably 5 minutes, the speculation as to where he will land shall progress. Pundits of teams who could remotely consider hiring a defensive coordinator will begin weighing in…which is what is going to happen right now.

The Tennessee Titans pushed their way through a torrential downpour of a season; one that was cosmically disappointing to all involved. Yes, it was that dramatic. Even noted super-expert (official title) Warren Sapp had proclaimed us a sleeper team to make the playoffs, and the fan base was bristling with excitement. Then almost-rookie Jake Locker suffered some growing pains, the defense regressed to an infant-like stage, and if it bothered Munchak, he certainly wasn’t about to let it be known. Additionally, Jerry Gray had a number of tricks up his sleeve just as he had promised all off-season; he just never decided to let them out.

Now, this 2012 Tennessee Titans defense wasn’t just bad, they were atrocious; the equivalent of a rabid dog that should be shot to death for the benefit of others. Ok, that was harsh and a bit theatrical, and I would never say that to the face of any of my beloved players, but in all seriousness, we did not play well on that side of the ball. You simply cannot defend a team that allowed 30 points or more in exactly half of it’s games, including two games in which more than 50 points were given up in each.

So can Rob Ryan turn around the 2013 Tennessee Titans? Perhaps. The first thing that would have to happen is that we switch to a 3-4 defense. Now, some would argue that we are not built for that, but after the 2012 season, would you argue that we’re built for success in a 4-3? The fact is that the Titans roster has flexibility at this point. The only people we are invested in for considerable time are Griffin and McCourty, who both play secondary and are less affected than those at other positions, and Wimbley, who would probably find great success at the OLB position, not to mention that it was Ryan who was able to maximize his effectiveness when drafted by the Raiders.

Could it work? Why not? At this point, what do we stand to lose?

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  • josh gunnels

    there’s been a lot of talk about how close we are to be being ready for a 3-4 as it is. the jump isn’t huge, but still there. we would need to draft/ acquire 2 ILB’s and another nose to help cassey, and oh yeah that good strong safety we need. with as many holes as this team has already and munchaks short leash, i can’t think now is the time.

    • josh gunnels

      that being said, i wouldn’t be upset!

    • http://www.titansized.com/ Justin Stewart

      Agreed. We have a bit of a hybrid defense right now that hints at a 3-4, but it’d be a bit of a push to make the complete switch.

    • Shawn Eagle

      I think the transition to a 34 will take a few more moves than that and I don’t think its something we can just jump into. A few questions remain reagding the switch. Where does Wimbley play? He’s no a 34 DE. Can Morgan transition to a 34 DE? Can Casey or Martin hold up playing NT in a 34? I think the transition would be a bit more difficult than some might think.

      • josh gunnels

        bottom line is there are too many other holes on the team to focus the entire off season to outfitting a new defensive scheme.

        • http://www.titansized.com/ Justin Stewart

          You never know though. Just look at the Colts. They had a pretty decent transition this year. Helps having a HC who was able to take some Ravens with him when he came aboard.

  • Modesto Koczwara

    I was thinking the exact same thing since the Cowboys fired Rob Ryan, the sane ryan, I would love the Titans to pick up Rob Ryan; his defensive skills is great and most importantly he turned the Cowboys circus defense around! Furthermore, I have no idea why the Cowboys did this!

    • http://www.titansized.com/ Justin Stewart

      I was pretty shocked by them doing it. Didn’t make any sense to me. Their loss! Like Ryan said, “I’ll be jobless for 5 minutes.”

      • Modesto Koczwara

        Yeah, exactly. Jerry Jones and the whole Cowboys front office are just brainless idiots in my opinion.

  • http://www.facebook.com/zechariah.kopels Zechariah Kopels

    I don’t see Ryan’s personality jiving with Muchack.

    • Jason Peters

      I think that would be a problem as well. I could see them clashing a bit.

    • http://www.titansized.com/ Justin Stewart

      That’s a good point. Munchak isn’t a lively man, and as we’ve seen from his staff choices, he likes to surround himself with like minded people.

      His job is on the line though. Talent is talent.

      • Jason Peters

        I think Munchak may be a bit too even keeled at times. While it’s great for keeping a cool head during games, I think our young team would do well to bring in someone to fire them up at the same time.

    • josh gunnels

      it would work out great personality wise. good cop/ bad cop.

  • Jason Peters

    With the 3-4, I could see Morgan playing DE (He’s not the sack machine/pass specialist we wan;t him to be, and he never will be), and Casey could play NT. We could get a free agent 3-4 DE for not much, or even try coaching up Martin to play the postion. Wimbley moves to OLB, Ayers gets double-digit sacks rushing from the other OLB spot, Mccarthy takes one of the ILB spots, and we draft Manti Teo with our 10′th pick to play the other ILB spot. We also sign a decent backup in case McCarthy goes down again.

    • http://www.titansized.com/ Justin Stewart

      I think Zac Diles should get re-signed. While he didn’t get to play much thanks to injury, I thought he did well.

    • josh gunnels

      then where do you put brown? you can’t take him out of OLB. forget wimbley. he becomes a back up or rotating DE at best

      • http://www.titansized.com/ Justin Stewart

        Wimbley has spent all of his time in the NFL, besides his time with the Titans, as an OLB.

      • Jason Peters

        Hmmmm…maybe Brown can play ILB while Wimbley holds down the position for a year or two…if he doesn’t perform, cut em loose.

        • http://www.titansized.com/ Justin Stewart

          Or we just get crazy and push Brown to SS, FTW.

          • Jason Peters

            He’s probably got the speed to do it. Be a hard hitter like Dawkins was in the day.

  • Mike F

    Yes Rob Ryan would be a perfect fix for the Titans D and Munchak would be silly not to atleast give it his best shot at getting him.