Dec 29, 2013; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Munchak during warm ups prior to the game against the Houston Texans at LP Field. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

Tennessee Titans: Thoughts on Coaching Search

Well, for the Titans’ fans that follow my posts, you now know that one of the big items on my wishlist will not come to fruition: keeping Mike Munchak.

The Tennessee Titans announced on Saturday that Mike Munchak would not be returning to the sidelines for a fourth season.  Based on a number of sources, Munchak was offered a multi-year extension along with a pay raise nearly double what he was making. However, he couldn’t agree with new CEO and team president Tommy Smith and general manager Ruston Webster on firing more than a dozen of his assistants.

There’s not too many people out there that sacrifice their own livelihood for the sake of “co-workers.”

The Titans joined the “head coach search” almost a week late. This gave the Cleveland Browns, Minnesota Vikings, Washington Redskins, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Houston Texans all a jump start.

I didn’t agree with the firing of Munchak to begin with, but then lost out on two of the biggest candidates—Lovie Smith (Bucs) and Bill O’Brien (Texans)—shortly after relieving him of his duties.  Talk quickly began of Smith and Webster interviewing other candidates with the likes Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden (now in agreement with the Washington Redskins), Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer, Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell, and future interviews scheduled with Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn,  and Chargers offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt.

Reports stated that Jay Gruden (not to be confused with older brother Jon Gruden) preferred the Titans job over the Redskins, but the Titans had not completed all their interviews yet.  So again, we lost out on another “top” candidate.

Now reports are suggesting that Quinn is the favorite for the head coach vacancy.  The good thing about Quinn is that he is, in part, responsible for the Legion of Doom (Seattle’s cool nickname for their defense).  The defense in Seattle has been a Top 10 defense in every statistical category.  The bad thing about Quinn coming to the Titans is that if he is hired he is almost guaranteed to let our defensive assistant Gregg Williams go, who I really wanted to see return as the new defensive coordinator, replacing Jerry Gray.

The only person I don’t want to see brought in as head coach is Caldwell.  That is no disrespect to Caldwell, I just don’t think he is ready to be a head coach again.  He had a short stint as the Indianapolis Colts head coach, replacing Tony Dungy. He rode to victory on the coattails of Peyton Manning.

Caldwell started the 2009 season 14-0 before benching all his players in the final two games and finishing 14-2.  The Colts made it to the Super Bowl only to lose to the New Orleans Saints 31-17.  Caldwell took the Colts into the postseason again, behind Manning, and lost to the New York Jets.  The 2011 season is what I feel like really showed what he was made of when the Colts fell to 2-14, earning the No. 1 draft pick to later begin the Andrew Luck era with Chuck Pagano.

At this point in time, I really don’t know who I prefer to be the new Titans’ head coach.  I like what Quinn brings to the table, I just don’t like the fact that a Williams departure is almost certain.  A guy like Zimmer feels like he has a lot to prove and could be a risk-taker, something that the conservative Titans organization could use.

I’ll leave the head-coaching search fall on Smith and Webster.  I mean, that is what they’re paid the big bucks for, right?

Who do you want to see on the sidelines as the Titans new head coach?

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Tags: Candidates Coach Tennessee Titans

  • Gary

    I like Mike Zimmer but it seems that they have their minds set on Dan Quinn. I’m fine with Quinn but I worry about who the OC will be. To me, that’s just as important to the success of this team. Also, I’d like to see a QB drafted. No knock on Locker but no way can you put all your eggs in that basket. I think Zach Mettenberger would be a steal in the 2nd round…if he last that long.

    • Chris

      Who is your source that says they have their minds set on Quinn? I too prefer Zimmer and wonder who would be his pick for OC. I also think you’re right, we need to find a QB in the upcoming draft.

      • Gary

        I don’t have any inside knowledge but based on stuff I read, it seems they want Quinn. Also, they have interviewed several candidates and haven’t offered anyone the job. If they were serious about those candidates, would they really risk waiting until the Seahawks lose to make a decision? Some of those guys (Zimmer mainly) could be off the market by then. I’ve read that the Vikings are seriously interested in Mike Zimmer so I’m thinking they probably already know who they want and have a verbal agreement with Quinn and are just going through the motions until Quinn’s season is over.

  • Adam Ellis

    I would like to see ken wisenhunt as the new head coach. The titans need someone who knows how to develop a quarterback.i dont think a defensive coach is te wayto go. The defense is just fine. Yes the run defense could be better, but that didnt lose us games. Turnovers and penalties were the main reason behind all 9 losses this year. And i think locker should get one more year to try and finally push out a 16 game season. If he can do that, and with the right offensive mind calling the plays, i think this team could be next years kansas city chiefs. If a 35 yr old kerry collins can start a season 10-0, theres no reason locker cant do the same thing. I know the defense was top teir that year, but we definitely have some playmakers on that side of the ball nowadays as well

    • Gary

      Whisenhunt wouldn’t be a bad choice either. I like the fact that he has HC experience already. I wish I had the belief in Locker you have but I just don’t believe he can stay healthy for 16 games and I don’t think his accuracy has improved enough. It has some but still isn’t great. I like to see us really make an effort to get a true quarterback. I like several in the upcoming draft. Zach Mettenberger looks like a great pick. Ryan Mallett may be available from the Patriots too. I really just want a QB that will make the most out of the great talent at WR on this roster.

      • Adam Ellis

        Youre right about the talent at wide reciever. You know who i think should get a chance, is mike preston. All hes ever done was come in off the practice squad and do everything hes supposed to do in every game hes played in. Hes like 6’5. Get him and 6’4 justin hunter on the outside, play kendall wright in the slot, and run a variation of the patriots style offense. And with kendall wright in the slot, its not out of the question to say he could catch 120 passes a year! We all know what hunter is capable of on the outside, and michael preston really deserves a chance to play every sunday as far as im concerned. Anyone agree/disagree with my philosophy?

        • Gary

          I like Preston a lot and really wished they had given him more playing time especially after seeing Britt drop so many passes. Its those type of personnel decisions that was so frustrating. When there is a guy on the bench you know would be a better option, they don’t use him. Instead they let Britt have too much playing time when Preston might have caught most of those passes Britt dropped. I still would have a hard time taking Washington off the field as he was fantastic but I would’ve like to see Preston in the mix more often.

  • Adam Ellis

    Im mean really, bottom line, it was a pleasant surprise to see the titans actually part ways with munchak. Still kind of annoying to think they actually gave him a chance to stay, but none the less i am glad to see him go and think they made the right decision. The titans have been a boring team and have made boring personell moves these last three years and am looking forward to whatever changes take place from here on out!

  • Adam Ellis

    And btw, i have heard nothing bad about ryan mallett and remember during the draft season that year, seeing mallett actually going to the titans in many movk drafts. Its a shame that he has to play behind tom brady bc i would like to see what kind of player mallett is

  • Bryan Inghram

    I think Darrell Bevel would be a better choice than Quinn…Like you said they have Williams for the defense so bringing in an offensive minded coach would be a better fit…especially since he will be installing the high powered seahawks offense

    • Gary

      I agree but don’t assume that if Quinn is the choice, he wouldn’t be capable of bringing in the right OC to install a similar offense. To me, it just really depends on who he brings in at OC and also how the rest of his staff looks.

  • Adam Ellis

    I guess ruston webster used to work in the seahawks front office, so its no wonder quinn name is getting thrown around alot. I would be ok with it, but like inghram said, i prefer an offensive minded coach as well. Hopefully greg williams will be promoted to DC. I cant stand jerry gray and loggains. Im glad to see them go, but wish them success wherever they go from here. Same with munchak. But MAN im glad to see them go lol. And ive pretty much lost hope on whisenhunt. Quinn sounds like a sure thing at this point