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Wednesday
Dec162015

2016 Potential Free Agent Picks

Today a list was published on NFL.com of the top 20 free agents for the upcoming 2016 season. There are many fantastic players on that list that would fit perfectly into the needs of the Titans. Below are my thoughts on the ones that might fill a need for this highly dysfunctional team.

Linebackers

Derrick Johnson

He is a veteran that might just become a cap casualty for the Chiefs. At 33, he is not in his prime, but the Titans are young and need leadership. He is a tackling machine with 962 tackles (as of this past weekend) in 11 seasons in the NFL. He also has 13 interceptions, 21 forced fumbles, and 3 TDs. This season alone he is on pace for over 100 tackles. The Titans are in need of an upgrade to middle linebacker, and if he is available, this would be a great addition. However, out of all the team needs, to me, this is at the bottom of the list.

Danny Trevathan

He is an up and coming talent. He has 171 total tackles, 3 forced fumbles, 5 interceptions and 1 TD. The only issue is that he doesn't bring the level of leadership this team craves. I'm afraid that the contract he will require is going to out-measure the skill he brings.

Cornerbacks

Josh Norman

He is having a fantastic year. He has 7 interceptions in his 4 year career, but of those 7, 4 are from this year with 2 being for TDs. He has career highs in interceptions, passes defensed, touchdowns, and forced fumbles. The only problem here is that I don't believe there is any way the Panthers let him go. If he doesn't get a contract signed, then he will most likely be franchised.

  

Janoris Jenkins 

He is a player that seems to be getting better each season. This just might mean that he is ready for a breakout season. Through 4 seasons he has 10 interceptions, 3 forced fumbles, 47 passes defensed, and 5 TDs. This might be a player that we can land without a break-the-bank contract.

Tackles

Cordy Glenn

He is that diamond in the rough, the protector of the QB's blind side, and he is that franchise left tackle that every team needs. He won't make it past the franchise tag, but if he does the Titans offensive line would take a huge step forward.

Safety

Eric Berry

With the inevitable loss of Michael Griffin, this position must be filled with a highly talented player. This could be THE player to grab in free agency for the Titans. He has ties to Tennessee because he attended the University of Tennessee. He has been stronger and more focused since he returned from his cancer scare. This should be the #1 person on the Titans list.

Conclusion

This is by no means an exhaustive list of potential free agents, and as noted above there are several that will receive the franchise tag, and if the Titans do sign these players it will not solve all of their issues. Whoever the Titans sign, they need to make an immediate impact.

 

Friday
Dec112015

Episode 277

Wednesday
Dec092015

Floyd Reese vs. Ruston Webster

Recently, Lindsey and I have had several discussions on the podcast about GM Ruston Webster. During each discussion, it was my opinion that he would be fired at the end of the season.

In an attempt to support my argument, I decided to compare Floyd Reese's last five years against Ruston Webster's first five years. There is a real difficulty in comparing picks from a list where most player's careers are over against picks from a list where most player's careers are still active. I decided to compare round-by-round average starts. This was as close as I could get to an even playing field. 

So here are my findings:

Floyd Reese

1st Round: 6.97 average starts per season per player
2nd Round: 7.23 average starts per season per player
3rd Round: 5.28 average starts per season per player
4th Round: 3.56 average starts per season per player
5th Round: 1.95 average starts per season per player
6th Round: 5.80 average starts per season per player
7th Round: 3.88 average starts per season per player

OVERALL AVERAGE GAMES STARTED PER SEASON PER PLAYER: 4.95

Ruston Webster

1st Round: 9.44 average starts per season per player
2nd Round: 6.92 average starts per season per player
3rd Round: 4.14 average starts per season per player
4th Round: 5.46 average starts per season per player
5th Round: 2.30 average starts per season per player
6th Round: 0.97 average starts per season per player
7th Round: 0.14 average starts per season per player

 

OVERALL AVERAGE GAMES STARTED PER SEASON PER PLAYER: 4.20

I also decided to look at busts and hits from each round. It's a little more subjective, but as you will see these choices were pretty clear. Remember this is 2002 - 2006 for Floyd Reese and 2010 - 2014 for Ruston Webster.

1st Round Hits
Floyd: none
Ruston: none

1st Round Busts
Floyd: Andre Woolfolk
Ruston: Jake Locker

2nd Round Hits
Floyd: Michael Roos
Ruston: none

2nd Round Busts
Floyd: Tyrone Calico, LenDale White
Ruston: Bishop Sankey

3rd Round Hits
Floyd: Randy Starks
Ruston: Jurrell Casey

3rd Round Busts
Floyd: Chris Brown
Ruston:  Rennie Curran

4th Round Hits
Floyd: David Stewart, Stephen Tulloch
Ruston: Alterraun Verner

4th Round Busts
Floyd: Mike Echols
Ruston: Coty Sensabaugh

5th Round Hits

Floyd: Jacob Bell
Ruston: Avery Williamson

5th Round Busts
Floyd: Jake Schifino, Damien Nash, Terna Nande
Ruston: none

6th Round Hits
Floyd: Justin Hartwig, Bo Scaife
Ruston: none

6th Round Busts
Floyd: none
Ruston: none

7th Round Hits
Floyd: Carlos Hall, Eugene Amano
Ruston: Marc Mariani

7th Round Busts
Floyd: none
Ruston: David Howard

Ruston Webster was the clear winner in the 1st round, but when you include hits/misses, Floyd Reese gets the edge. 

 

 

Friday
Dec042015

Episode 276

Monday
Nov232015

What Direction Are The Titans Going?

Now that the Tennessee Titans seem to be back on the losing path, how can you classify them? Is this the "still playing hard" team? Is this the "we have a lot of talent" team? Is this the "we are almost there" team? Is this the "playing to see what we have for next season" team? I'm not fully sure, but what I can fully say is that the Titans are not the "we find a way to win" team, or the "we don't beat ourselves with mental mistakes" team.

This team continues to get inopportune penalties and cannot find a way to overcome mistakes. So many times this team has a mental mistake that ends a drive or breathes life into the other team. I haven't been able to fully put my finger on exactly what it would take to get this team to win (other than better talent). So, let's start at the top.

Ownership

Until recently I would have told you that this is the primary reason the team hasn't found a way to win is the lack of leadership from the top. However, there has been some movement here and there by this group. I'm not sure they aren't still a huge problem, but at least it is not as bad as I once thought.

General Manager/Front Office

I'm still convinced that GM Ruston Webster is going to lose his job in the off season. He has had so many crucial misses on drafts and hasn't made much of a splash in free agency. If he doesn't lose his job in the off season, then the previous statements about the ownership group will be changed to apathy not lack of leadership. His misses on drafts are well documented, buy his misses in free agency need to be addressed too. He has had a hit this season with Orakpo, but everyone else have only had a good game here and there. Fasano, Cox, Searcy, and Douglas have not lifted this team as high as expected. Also, with huge misses (talent and money) like Andy Levitre and Ryan Fitzpatrick on his resume, that speaks volumes in the way he attains talent. He has had a huge hit with Delanie Walker, but it seems like for every good signing, he signs 7 or 8 misses. I'm not sure if he doesn't understand what the coaches need or doesn't buy into the plan.

Coaches

I fully believe in what Dick LeBeau and Ray Horton are doing on the defense, and the Titans are playing well enough to win on that side of the ball. However, I don't believe that Mike Mularkey or the other offensive coaches have real direction in what they want to accomplish. It is like a rudderless ship. So there are quite a bit of issues here. Oh, I think the offense knows what they want to do, but no idea how to accomplish it. If this team really wants to win, then this offensive scheme needs to be gutted completely.

Players

We have players that have great potential. It cannot be said enough how Marcus Mariota is the QB of the future for the Titans, but he cannot do this on his own. We absolutely need to give him some offensive weapons to help him. Delanie Walker will continue to be a big part too. The offensive line needs to revamped completely and I cannot say that any of these players are locks. I want to say that about Lewan, but lately he is making mental error after mental error. We also have so many "experiments" on this offense, how can this team expect to excel. 

Conclusion

This team is truly the question people ask when there is a task that seems overwhelming, "How do you eat an elephant?... One bite at a time." The elephant size problem for this team is they aren't finding a way to win. Each bite (or change) will take some time and concerted effort, but there MUST be someone directing this seemingly impossible feat (and feast) if the Titans ever hope to get back on track.