Tuesday Mailbag: Jim Wyatt Answers Questions From Titans Fans

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NASHVILLE – Never in doubt, right?

The Titans held on for a wild, heart-stopping win on Sunday at Nissan Stadium over the Chargers.

It sure changed the tone of at least some of the questions in here this week.

Here's proof…

Bill from Spokane Washington
Question
: Mr. Wyatt, Is it too soon to install Number 17 in the Titans Ring of Honor? What a pleasure to watch an NFL-caliber passer.

Jim: Good one, Bill. 😊 Tannehill played well, but let's not get ahead of ourselves. It was one game…

William John from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Question:
Just wanted to congratulate the boys on a solid performance and pulling out the W in a nail biter ... Ryan looked solid at quarterback D. Henry still working his a** off man is a monster also cant forget C.Davis he showed out today too on the receiving end OVERALL solid performance. The Boys got it done now give em the day off for some rest .... then back to business we gotta prep for the Bucs. We need to keep the momentum going we got a division to win ...... Go titans

Jim: Hey William. It was a crazy ending. One of the wildest I've seen in the stadium. What needs to happen now is for the team to keep it going. I'm looking at my schedule/results right now and see W,L,L,W,L,L,W. The Titans need to give the Ls an L and add more Ws.

Juan Ramirez from Corpus Christi, Texas
Question:
Hey Jim. Glad to see the Titans won the game against the Chargers on Sunday. I have just a few things I'd like to say as far as Quarterback play: First the Chargers were missing half of their defensive starters so I'm not really impressed with how well Tannehill played. Also, if you watched the game they had some injuries on the defensive side early and often I swear I saw one of the waterboys suit up for the Chargers. I don't think it's fair to evaluate Tannehill at least until after they play a good defense like Carolina. My question is why would coach vrabel go for it on 4th and inches at midfield and when we have the best punter in the business? Our defense has played well all year and even if we give up a field goal we haven't lost the game. How much longer is it going to take Amy Adams Strunk to move on from Vrabel?

Jim: C'mon Juan, give me a break. Or give Ryan Tannehill a break. Yes, the Chargers were missing some players, but that's a regularity in the NFL. Let's give credit where credit is due. How can you say you weren't impressed with Tannehill? The guy completed nearly 80 percent of his passes and he made some great throws. I'm not going to call him the second coming of Tom Brady, but I'm not going to let you discredit him either. As for why Vrabel went for it, I would have done the exact same thing. On the previous possession Philip Rivers guided the Chargers 75 yards in 1:30 on four plays. I don't care how good the punt might've been, they would've had time. And Vrabel isn't going anywhere.

Tim Delong from Zephyrhills, Florida
Question:
What happened to Delanie Walker?

Jim: Hey Tim. Unfortunately, he was dealing with an ankle injury that slowed him in practices leading up to the game. He played just five snaps before the decision was made to shut him down. I thought Jonnu Smith and Anthony Firkser stepped up and played well. Vrabel said on Monday the team will work with Walker to try and get him back.

Alex Aguero from Union, New Jersey
Question:
Jim. Why does coach Vrabel have such a tough time praising Tannehill? There is this perception that he is STILL protecting Marcus and addressing media questions without backing the man he put under center. It was something along the lines of "Ryan's decisiveness and ability to get the ball out led to less sacks" and his response was "well we blocked better". Completely dismissing a pretty good game 1 by Ryan! It's a little frustrating to hear him tiptoe around player feelings and, in my opinion, showing his new starter he doesn't fully have his back. Thanks! Let's see a 10-6 season with this new life. TitanUp

Jim: Hey Alex. Well, to be honest, he always hesitated to praise Marcus as well. Still protecting Marcus? Heck, he's the guy who ultimately benched him. Vrabel just doesn't like to heap praise on any one player, especially the quarterback. He wants the focus to be on the team. So while it might've seemed like he was somewhat nonchalant when asked about Tannehill following Sunday's game, he was the same way with Marcus. That's just how he handles his business.

Eli Decko from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Question:
Hey Jim. What can't winning cure? You've got a bunch of haooy fans, coaches, players and ownership. Us armchair QB's will always have opinions but boy was it nice seeing our receivers, well, receive. Derrick Henry looked good, but not December 2018 good. How is Jack's leg injury? Can Dennis Kelly get a key to the city yet? Talk about having great depth. No interception from Byard, but he still had a great game! Do you think we will make any moves before the deadline? Our line could still block better and we are nearly halfway through the season. Marcus continues to be a great teammate, you saw him on the sideline I'm sure. Tannehill was pretty darn good man. I'm sure Jonnu and the others are extremely happy to contribute for a change. Thanks for reading. Have a good week!

Jim: Hey Eli. Conklin is day to day. I thought Dennis played well, as usual. As for moves before the deadline, I've learned to expect the unexpected with the GM.

Matthew Colony from Oroville, California
Question:
Hey Jim. I can't be the only one who thinks Logan Ryan is having an All Pro season so far. Can I??

Jim: Nope. You have plenty of company.

Kevin D from Honolulu, Hawaii
Question:
Hey Jim, I will come right out and say there is some bitterness in my comments, but will start by saying that it is nothing against Tannehill. He played a good game. I'm just disappointed that Marcus was pegged as the scapegoat for the offense's poor play up to this point. And now with one game on the bench and one win for the team, there will be many that say "see! It was Marcus all along!" As if Marcus never had good games. Let's be clear, Marcus is a good QB. He has led the Titans to wins, made plays, has been consistent, etc. I guess I'm just saddened that people will have no problem overlooking all the positives that Mariota has to offer a team.
Also, I think this was the plan all along. You don't bring in a starting QB to be your backup. Tannehill was brought in to be the starter. Sure, there was hope that the Marcus investment would pay off, and given the right situation, it would have. But it's quite the coincidence that Tannehill is given control of the offense with Lewan and Nate Davis having a ittle time under their belts to acclimate and fight off rust, in addition to the introduction of Simmons, who gives the defense an edge, allowing the offense to be more aggressive. And lastly, I think a Mariota led team would have beat the Chargers on Sunday too. They are struggling. I'll end the whining with a question: Do you think the Titans will trade Marcus? He deserves an opportunity to play somewhere else.

Jim: Hey Kevin. I appreciate you taking the time, and for your comments. I will say unequivocally the plan all along wasn't to make Tannehill the starter. If Marcus had played better during the first six games of the season, he would still be the starter and Tannehill would be the back-up, which is what he was brought here to do. I've said this before: The team's struggled in Weeks 1-6 weren't all the QB's fault. But let's not pretend Marcus was playing great, because he wasn't. And that's why the QB change was made. As for Marcus being traded, I'm not expecting it. The Titans don't have another QB on the roster behind Tannehill.

Harry Martin from Jacksonville, Florida
Question:
WELL HELLO from Jacksonville, FL. Navy Veteran. Just a few words, FINALLY!!!! Our offense looked very good and even though the defense gave up some big plays they came through on a final stand. YOU SHALL NOT PASS!!! On a further note, I do recall Jeffrey Simmons during his draft day phone call saying "I won't let you down".......He is a man of his words. I'm a believer, gonna keep believing in this team to do great things! #TITANUP!!!

Jim: Hey Harry. First off, thanks for your service. And you're right – Simmons looked, well, pretty serviceable himself …

Jimmy McDonald from Memphis, Tennessee
Question:
I just want to know where I can come to tryout for right tackle cause we getting beat every drive on that side of ball?

Jim: Hey Jimmy. Stop by this week. You'll be asked to block Jeffery Simmons and if all goes well then you might get a shot…

Micah Layne from Coalmont, Tennessee
Question:
Hi Jim hope your weekend was great. I was on the edge of my seat for this one for sure. I'll admit I thought they pulled the plug on Mariota a few games too early but Tannehill definitely has a quicker release and seems to keep his eyes downfield a little better. Hopefully he can string a few wins together now. Simmons made an immediate impact which was great to see. My question is did you see Coach Vrabel's face from the 4th down we didn't convert on? I don't think anyone was needing a win worse than that guy it was all over his face. I liked the call to go for it because we really needed this win. Thanks Jim and as always TitanUP!!!!

Jim: Hey Micah. The weekend was great -- the Titans and Vandy both picked up big wins! As for Vrabel's expression, I think he was baffled by that spot – there's no way Tannehill lost yardage on that sneak.

Kelly Swank from Kelowna British Columbia
Question:
My husband tells me that if Tannehill doesn't work out they're talking about Ryan Fitzpatrick?? Please say it isn't soooooo...... NOBODY IS THAT MEAN RIGHT??? The Titans DO NOT deserve that and coaches that may be considering this move need to MOVE ON! It's a rumor right? Or is my husband trying to make me cry? Bad enough Mariota is oughta there.

Jim: Hi Kelly. Your husband needs to sleep on the couch for a few weeks …

Lyle Simmons from Winchester, Tennessee
Question:
Hi Jim. Why didn't the Titans use a timeout to challenge the spot on the final quarterback sneak? Per the video, Ryan seemed to advance the ball at least 1/2 yard. We were only a few inches short on third down. Thanks for the explanation.

Jim: Hey Lyle. Well, Vrabel discussed this at his presser on Monday. Here's his answer: "As far as challenging the spot, I talk to (Senior NFL vice president of officiating) Al (Riveron) as much as Al can really stand talking to me because I need to know what exactly he's thinking, and Russell Yurk in New York when they go through a challenge process. Because it's not how we see it, it's not how I see it, it's how they see it. I'll tell you that if they can't see the football on the spots, they're next to impossible to get. So, the spot challenges that we've seen, the few that have been reversed, just like with Dalvin Cook a few weeks ago – he was kind of in the open field. There was one tackler on him, he reaches the ball and then his knee goes down. You can clearly see the ball, you can clearly see the knee. When you have 20 people in there on a sneak and you can't see the football, that's when Al tells you, 'If I can't see the football, I can't overturn whatever they called on the field.' Hope this clears it up.

Daylen Bills from Salt Lake City, Utah
Question:
Hi Jim, long time reader, first time writer. First off, regardless of the QB situation I just want to say thank you to Mariota for being an incredible example to all those around him. He'll always be my guy! My question is about kicking. We picked up Santos as a substitute until Succop is back. He played pretty well for a temporary sub up until the Buffalo game. He had a terrible game, but why cut him just to pick up double doink Parkey for 3 weeks till Succop comes back? At least Santos can make a PAT.. I just don't see how Parkey is an answer to Santos having a bad day. It's no understatement to say how frustrated Titans fans are this year, and some of these questionable decisions make it so much harder.

Jim: I hear ya, Daylen. And you're right -- Marcus is a first-class human being, and a true professional. As for the team's failures in the kicking game, you could make an argument the Titans might be 5-2 right now without their issues kicking the football through the uprights. It sounds like Ryan Succop is making progress. He remains on Injured Reserve, but is eligible to come off after Week 8 – in time for the Week 9 game at Carolina. There's no guarantee that's his return game, but I think he's getting close and I expect him to be kicking on Sundays again in the not-so-distant future. Vrabel said as much on Monday.

Miles Call from Hockessin, Delaware
Question:
Hey Jim, I can't describe how happy I am right now, I was sure the Titans had blown it once the Chargers got it 1st and goal from the 1, but we stepped up and got the fumble and came up absolutely huge. Overall, in my opinion the Titans played a great game on all cylinders and came up huge when they needed to. The D played great down the stretch and especially the offense guided by Ryan Tannehill was very effective. I'm so happy Ryan had a good game and let's carry the momentum into next week!! Also I loved then uniforms the Titans wore, definitely better than the whites they had gone with the previous 6 weeks.

Jim: Hey Miles. Was definitely a complete win. Look good, play good, right?

Have a great week everyone!

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