Tennessee Titans defensive coordinator Dean Pees wants to show his appreciation for punter Brett Kern.
Tennessee Titans punter Brett Kern has been a secret weapon for the team’s defense this season, and as such defensive coordinator Dean Pees would like to reward him for it.
Kern has been one of the best players on the team in 2019. He leads the NFL in punts landing inside the 20 with 23, which is six more than the next closest team.
In Week 6, eight of Kern’s nine punts landed inside the 20, tying the NFL’s all-time single-game record. Since 2011, Kern has dropped 277 of his 687 punts inside the 20, the most in the league in that span. Both stats were courtesy of Jim Wyatt of Titans Online (here and here).
Because of Kern’s elite prowess, Titans opponents are starting with one of the worst average field position marks in the NFL this season, and that has undoubtedly helped the defense en route to just 15.3 points per game allowed, the fifth-fewest in the NFL.
Pees wants to show his appreciation for the helping hand Kern has given him and the defense by taking the punter and his wife out for dinner. He even called Kern the defense’s MVP in 2019, per Jim Wyatt of Titans Online.
"“I’ll take them to dinner anytime they want. He is incredible. I told him one day when he walked down the hall I said ‘you know you’re the most valuable player on defense’. He is incredible. I’ve been around some good ones and he ranks right up there, if not the best. He’s excellent.”"
That is quite the compliment from a coach like Pees, who has been around the NFL for many years now — and Kern has earned every bit of it.
It’s rare to see punters get much credit, but it’s hard not to notice just how good the Titans punter is, especially with the offense playing as poorly as it has and being unable to sustain drives.
From what I’ve seen, Titans fans know damn well just how special a punter they have in Kern. He remains the one constant for this team, and he has been that way for years now.