By: Brendan Smart ( @bsmart21 )
Despite a tough 27-10 loss on Sunday against the undefeated Carolina Panthers, the Titans (2-8) still had yet another chance to move up in the worst division in the NFL. On Thursday Night Football, debuting the NFL Color Rush uniforms, The Titans held their own destiny in Jacksonville against the Jaguars but came up short on the final drive of the game eventually losing 19-13.
Now, many can point at interim head coach Mike Mularkey for the Titans failure to bounce back and win one few winnable games left on the schedule while trying to catch the Colts, but has anyone kept a tally of key players the Titans have lost to injuries? Mularkey has, in my opinion, done his best work with this team, given the talent he has had to work with. For a coach that has taken over in the middle of the season he has been impressive in my opinion and has provided more of a spark that was simply not there under Whisenhunt.
In a season of so much hope, Marcus Mariota fell to the Titans pick in the draft and everything seemed to be on the rise. Thursday night we saw the Titans season in a 2 minute drill, when Marcus Mariota drove the ball down to the Jaguars 20 yard line. With 5 seconds Mariota was sacked, and the game ended in a fashion that Titans fans have become all too familiar with. With the Titans taking yet another disappointing loss in a game that very easily been a win, I still feel that no one on that field on Thursday besides the offensive line is to blame. Let’s take a trip down memory lane, and see where all roads lead to in the ‘blame game.'
Look back at Titans General Manager Ruston Webster’s draft picks beginning in 2012.
Now, when a team is rebuilding it must hit on at least two picks in a draft. Starting in 2012, the Titans hit on three solid guys, but we entered the 2013 draft and hit on maybe one in Chance Warmack. Next, in 2014, we draft our “offensive captain” in Taylor Lewan, but let’s all be honest he has hurt this team more than he could’ve ever helped.
If I agree with every Titans fan out there, I agree that it’s time for Ruston Webster to go, and he saved his job for the remainder of the season by bringing in Mike Mularkey. Mularkey hasn’t been a force in this league for years by being ‘conservative.’ I might add that when having the weapons available, Mularkey puts a great game plan together, but the last two weeks, key players have been sidelined.
I go on to say this, not many Titans fans know who Mike Mularkey is, how he learned the game, and how he has succeeded in the NFL, but it is a bright past. I’m all in on interviewing future coaches, but I don’t think a single possible coaching recruit could put together a game plan for this beaten Titans team like Mularkey has.