Tennessee Titans: Wednesday News Links
By Les Bailey
The NFL Playoffs are set to start on Saturday with Wild Card Weekend and a Houston Texans 4:20 PM match-up with the Kansas City Chiefs, but the offseason is already underway for the Tennessee Titans. The only thing the Titans 3-13 record will net is the first pick in the 2016 NFL Draft.
The Titans got the ball rolling on Monday by firing general manager Ruston Webster after a four-year stint where the talent on this team has not improved, and opened up the search for a new head coach to lead Marcus Mariota and this franchise to the “promised land”.
Ranking NFL coaching vacancies: What’s the top job? – Gregg Rosenthal Around the NFL
1. Tennessee Titans: This is purely a bet on a promising young quarterback. The Titans have a confusing ownership structure, and that extends to the front office. There has been significant instability in the franchise over the last five years, and the roster doesn’t have a lot of areas you can identify as “strengths.” And yet they have Marcus Mariota and the top pick in the 2016 draft.
While many writers rank this coaching job a great opportunity, Michael Silver believes if the Titans bring back Mike Mularkey as the head coach on a permanent basis, fans should go to the Grand Ole Opry and forget about the 2016 season.
Titans shouldn’t overrate Mike Mularkey’s relationship with Marcus Mariota – Paul Kuharsky ESPN
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Whoever coaches the Titans next year will have a good relationship with Mariota, because he’s a good quarterback who respects authority and is eager to please.
Mularkey did good work building a relationship with Mariota, but that element of his résumé can be easily matched in short order.
I agree with Paul here. Marcus Mariota wants to win at this level, and will build a relationship with anyone who he feels can lead this team to the playoffs.
I like Mike Mularkey, but don’t think he is the best that will be available as the search for a head coach continues.
The Titans need a strong head coach that isn’t afraid of management, and isn’t afraid to make the changes that this team needs to get to the next level.
Do Titans need more experienced offensive linemen – John Glennon The Tennesean
"Tight end Delanie Walker on current group: ‘They’re too young’"
“We don’t need another rookie lineman,” Walker said Monday night in the final episode of the J-Mac Show, hosted by The Tennessean and ESPN 102.5-FM. “Our offensive line, they’re too young. We don’t need another young guy on the line. We have eight picks, so use them wisely or trade to get older guys to come in and play the line — savvy vets, eight-year guys or seven-year guys that understand how to win and know the game.
“I think that will help the O-line. But having a rookie come in and play with more rookies just doesn’t sit well with me, and probably not with Marcus (Mariota).”
I will probably draw the wrath of fans here and Titan Sized co-editor, Will Lomas, but I agree with Delanie Walker here.
The pool of offensive linemen in the collegiate draft is pretty shallow, and most teams struggle with this position, even the New England Patriots, Denver Broncos and more.
They don’t solve this problem by drafting more offensive linemen, they solve it with coaching.
Offensive linemen do not come out of college ready to play in the NFL, they get into coaching systems that develop them into great linemen.
A strong OL coach like a Tom Cable or a Butch Davis can develop mediocre linemen into Pro Bowlers over time.
Titans making a run at Ravens assistant G.M. Eric DeCosta – Darin Gantt Pro Football Talk
The Titans might not be the most glamorous opening in the NFL, but you at least have to give them credit for aiming high.
Next: What's Next for the Tennessee Titans?
And even though the Titans job comes with a quarterback in place and the first pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, the uncertainty of their off-site ownership might be enough to keep him from being interested in them.