Oct 28, 2012; Nashville, TN, USA; The Indianapolis Colts offensive and the Tennessee Titans defensive await play to resume in a time out during the second half at LP Field. The Colts beat the Titans 19-13 in overtime. Mandatory credit: Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports

Tennessee Titans Staff Really, Really, Really Believes In Gregg Williams

 How much faith do the Tennessee Titans have in Gregg Williams?  Apparently a lot.

It’s no secret that the team performed poorly on both sides of the ball in their 2012 campaign, but the defense did rank much lower than the offense, along with allowing a franchise record 471 points.  Outside of bringing in safeties George Wilson and Bernard Pollard, along with mammoth defensive lineman Sammie Lee Hill, the Titans have done little to address the defensive side of the ball.

It was widely assumed that the rest of the defensive personnel needs would be met through the draft.  With the 10th and 40th pick in the draft, not to mention a bevy of other picks to move around with, the Titans had a great opportunity to get a top rated defensive lineman as well as corner or safety.  Instead they elected to continue and upgrade the offense and picked guard and wide receiver with their first two selections.

Let’s go back in time and look at an even bigger surprise when defensive coordinator Jerry Gray was able to keep his job.  With Chris Palmer losing his job mid season, it was widely speculated that Gray would lose his job once the season was over.  Head coach Mike Munchak made a point of saying that there would be no replacements anywhere on the staff unless there was a better option available.  Apparently they never found one.  Gray can’t be blamed for blown assignments and missed tackles, but he can be blamed for a lot of the play calling and for misplacing players (Michael Griffin).

The Titans have lately brought in defensive end free agents Israel Idonije and John Abraham along with cornerback Jason Allen.  While they are still looking to upgrade at any spot possible, the bulk of their personnel moves are done with.

Mandatory Credit: Matt Stamey-USA TODAY Sports

When the Titans elected to retain Gray, it sent a message that the problem resided on the personnel side of the defense and less on the coaching.  Now the Titans have followed that up with a relative lack of attention to the players on that side of the ball.  So which is it?  Coaches or players?  What’s the fix?

Enter Gregg Williams.

The amount of control that Williams will have over the defensive is yet to be seen.  Jerry Gray will still be calling the plays, but it’s my assumption that Gregg Williams will have a lot more say in what those plays are to begin with.  His presence and comments in the meeting rooms and on the sideline will go a long way as well.

Let’s remember, this isn’t a defense that just needed a little tweaking.  They set a franchise record in points allowed.  And outside of George Wilson and Bernard Pollard, it seems the Titans believe Gregg Williams is the fix.


For Titans articles and chat, you can find me on Twitter @gunnelsj



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  • Shawn Eagle

    Williams and Gray work well together….I think Williams bring back the fire and intensity needed for the players.

    • josh gunnels

      I hope you’re right. Hopefully he knows how to have a defense account for the TE as well!

  • Jason Jones

    The Titans did pick-up Blidi Wreh-Wilson to play outside corner in the Nickel allowing Verner to play in the Slot. They also added a mammoth 6ft 8, 315 lb run stuffing DE in Ropati Pitoitua. Not to mention adding the Zach Brown clone at LB in Zaviar Gooden. Gooden allows Ayers to line-up at DE in some defensive looks.

    All of those additions plus Sammie Hill DT, Benard Pollard SS, George Wilson SS, and the Gregg Williams & Jerry Gray combo DC is going to equal a whole new Defense for the Titans this year.

    • josh gunnels

      I hope you’re right. My point on BWW was that the Titans let 8 other CB’s go off the board by picking up Hunter in the second instead of a corner or defensive player.

      Until we see him play, Hill can be considered a lateral move from Marks, and I’m not counting on mid-round draft picks to completely turn around the defense.

      The safety additions are HUGE, but it seems to me the Titans are putting a lot of faith in Greg Williams. Hopefully it’s merited.