(on the progress at practice this week with Dowell Loggains as offensive coordinator)
So far, so good. I think as we get through the week with the staff, I think it’s gone well. The energy in the building is real good. It’s going like I thought it would. Good day of practice today, covered a lot of situations. It’s going like I hoped it would.
(on Dowell Loggains’ relationship with Mike Heimerdinger)
He was almost like a pass coordinator then. He was doing a lot of work with Mike (Heimerdinger). They worked side-by-side and Mike really trusted him and believed in his ideas and thoughts. Even before Dinger got sick and needed more help, he was really with him a lot on the passing game and first and second down, third down. He came up with a lot of ideas. So it’s something he’s very comfortable in. He continued that with Norm Chow. With Norm, he did it quite a bit also, same type of thing. A guy that always came up with ideas and thoughts for them to think about and consider. He’s very comfortable with all that. So that’s why the confidence is there that it’s not going to be a problem for him at all with ideas and things to do and how to get guys the ball and how to attack coverage. On the other side of the ball, he understands the run game and the protections very well because he’s had to teach all of that for the last so many years to the quarterbacks. He’s got a great understanding of that. Really, the newness for him is being in charge, being the guy. That’s always different when you’re actually that guy now in the building and you’re making the final decisions now rather than being the guy suggesting the decisions. That’s something he’s got to get used to. Game day is going to be just like for me when I became a head coach, you can’t really know what it’s all about until you actually do it. That part of it, he’s been calling plays in I think, which has been helpful that he’s done that this year and he’s done it in the past. The last four or five weeks, he’s been on the set, so he has all that part worked out. He understands the timing of all that and calling the plays now. He’ll just skip a step, and he’ll call the play instead of being told a play. I think all of those things will be a challenge for him, no doubt, but exciting on the other side. It’s something he’s looked forward to, so we’ll see how it goes.
(on bringing in Tom Moore)
Again, when we made the move, we realized that we were going to kind of spread Dowell (Loggains) a little thin there. He is the quarterbacks coach and he is picking up a lot of extra responsibility, not just on Sundays, but the workload in the building and coordinating each room, the running back room, the tight end room, running back and forth. What happens when you do that is you’re kind of a man short. You want someone to be with the quarterbacks when he can’t be, kind of be where he can’t be. During the day or out here at practice while he was talking to you all today, Tom (Moore) was out there with them working on some pre-practice drills with the quarterbacks. I think that’s the thinking there of how Tom can be a help to him and a resource for him and a resource for the staff, in general. For a guy that’s been part of 38 years in the NFL, part of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and he’s been part of every type of offense—two-back, with Barry Sanders in Detroit, when there were three wides with a running game like that, and obviously the last so-many years in Indianapolis with their type of offense. A lot of resources for a lot of our coaches, and we just thought that because we did need an extra hand right now because of the adjustment we made, he was a great fit for that.
(on if Tom Moore will be at the facility every day)
Yesterday was his first day here, so I think we’re just taking it like we are. I talked to him on Tuesday, and he was here on Wednesday afternoon. I think it’s just something…We just got started, it was his first day getting a chance to meet the players on the offensive side of the ball and kind of get a feel for what we’re doing. We’ll just take it that way day-by-day, and he’ll be here, and I think he’ll be a big help to all of us.
(on if Tom Moore will have a title as a member of the staff)
No, just part of the staff. Legally, nothing. To me, he’s not going to have a title, he’s not going to have a position to coach. He’s just going to be a helping hand in a lot of ways, a resource. He’s coached every position on offense, he’s coached receiver, he’s coached Lynn Swann and John Stallworth. He’s got a lot of things he can add to some thoughts on the receiving game, the passing game. He’s got a lot of experience in general. No real title, just going to be here to help us as an offensive assistant. I don’t think we’ll ever actually have a title or anything like that. I think it was more of a spur of the moment, figuring out, for me, what we thought we needed. I didn’t want to overwhelm any of our coaches, where to ask Dowell (Loggains) to do all of that work and then call the game and then coach the quarterbacks and then do this and do that, and do scripts. It’s a lot of work, so we thought if we had someone else here that could help in certain areas, that would help. I thought of Tom (Moore) and gave him a call.
(on running the no-huddle with Tom Moore on the staff)
I think it just opens up the possibilities of things you can explore with just talking. It’s just someone else that can give you some input on how to do certain things. We do some no-huddle. Are we going to change to that? No, obviously not. Like we said, we don’t have the time to make any dramatic changes, even if Dowell (Loggains) wanted to do something totally different. You just have to change and mold your philosophy a little bit about the playcalling and how you call plays. For the most part, it’s just more or less having someone else to throw ideas off of. ‘Here’s why I do it this way,’ or a guy that has experience at all. It’s a huge help in this profession. When I coached the offensive line, I’d be calling guys during the week sometimes with some issues that came up or friends that played a team already, and say, ‘What do you think of this?’ ‘Why’d you guys do this?’ Now he has that right in the building. Dave Ragone can say, ‘Hey, what about this? Did you have this problem? I’m having this issue with teaching my guy this.’ We have a fantastic resource for all of the coaches. That’s what it’s all about. It’s not any other reason, it’s just that we are a little shorthanded. We thought that this would be a very good fit for us going forward.
(on how long he’s known Tom Moore)
I’ve known Tom (Moore). Obviously, I’ve known of him and his accomplishments, meeting him at different places, at the Combine. We’re good friends with Howard Mudd. He and Howard have worked, obviously, together for a lot of years, had a lot of success. So I met through him. I talked to him back when I was putting a staff together a couple years ago. I reached out and talked to him a little bit back then, so I had a comfort for that. I knew that he was wanting to get into coaching again or be involved in the game. I know he loves the game, he loves Sundays, he loves competing. He loves being around the guys, he runs football camps all the time. He knows everybody, shoot, back to when the game got going. I knew he was available, like I said. I knew he was with the Jets last year. I knew he spent some time with Alabama. I knew he’s done some different things with people. They look at him the same way, great resource. We happen to be in a situation where that fit our need right now, so I called him. I called him on Tuesday after we did this. I was thinking about how to piece this together once we made the decision and made the move. It just so happened that he was ready and available.
(on the most recent place Tom Moore has been)
I don’t know. Yeah, he’s been (with the Jets). I’m not sure what else he’s been doing. I just know that I’ve been hearing his name from different people when I talk to them. I knew he wanted to get back into coaching. Last year was the first year he actually didn’t have a position, I think. I know he spent some time with the Jets last year. Other than that, you know his resume. He’s a great fit for our need as far as helping us going forward. It’s not anything more than that. Dowell (Loggains) is a first-time coordinator. It’s strictly about needing some more help in the building. He’s a guy that obviously has a resume that’s more than qualified for what we need. We’re fortunate that someone like him is available when we need it. We’re going to take full advantage of that. I think it’s smart that we’re doing that. I think that’s how the players see it and how the coaching staff is excited. They should be. We have a chance to learn more and learn how to do your job better. It’s great to do that.
(on if he’s worried that it might be intimidating for Dowell Loggains to have Tom Moore around)
He was the one that was most excited in the building when I mentioned to him, ‘What do you think about this or that?’ He was probably the one that wanted to call him before I did because that’s the kind of guy he is. He just wants the resource and the fact that he can pick his brain and run ideas off of him. I think that’s how he should be. I think the coaches are the same way. This guy isn’t coming in for anyone’s job. He’s not looking to be the coordinator for the Titans or a position job. He’s just coming in because he’s very knowledgeable and he loves the game, wants to be around it, and we happen to have a need. It’s a win-win for both sides, and I think it’s going to be nothing but a great situation. I don’t see it at all in that manner. It’s not some 30-year old, 40-year-old guy that’s been a coordinator coming in, going to buck for the job or something. It’s nothing anywhere near that kind of conversation. I think it’s exciting for us. I think it’s going to be good for the organization and our development going forward as an offense.
(on reports that the league might ban cut blocks next season)
I’m sure there will be a lot of conversation about that. I’ve seen something about that. That’d be hard to imagine that happening. I know it’s all about safety, but it’s hard to think that you can’t cut anybody when you play football. We’ll see how it all works out, but I think that’s going to be a hard one to get passed.
(on cut blocks when he was a player)
To be honest, I didn’t like cut blocking. Now, you play the Texans, and if you don’t cut on the backside, it’s a negative because that fits their system. For me, I would cut at a last resort. I just never believed in playing it that way. I thought if I hit a linebacker, I’m going to hit him right in the face and that kind of thing. But certain blocks where you get out and run, once I got slower and I couldn’t run with those guys anymore, then definitely you’re going to dive and cut. In the open field on a screen, you have no choice. You can’t match up with those little guys, so there’s definitely a place. That’s why it’s hard to believe that it will ever be out of the game because you can’t ask a guy that’s 300-some pounds that can’t run like the other guy, to have to run and run with him. It’s impossible, but if I can dive at your legs, I might not get you, but I’ll kind of knock you off your stride or I’ll push back or do something that will disrupt your angle to the play. It’d be hard to think that it’d be out of the game because that would really change the game pretty dramatically, I think in a negative way.
I think Jerry (Gray) knows him back in those days. I haven’t watched any film. I know when he came here, we watched film on him and we were excited. That’s why he’s here, because of how he played and Jerry’s familiarity with him. He’s played well when he’s been here. When you’re not playing and something happens, it’s all about being more consistent play-in and play-out, and not allowing big plays. If it’s your opportunity to make a play, you have to make a play.