NASHVILLE – Welcome to the bye weekend – and to another Titans mailbag.
Thanks for always keeping this hopping.
Let’s knock some of these out, then I’m going to get hopping into the last free weekend for a while.
Jared Mixon from Valdez, Alaska
Question: That was an amazing team win over the Chiefs It was great to see the special teams unit make big plays and I was pleasantly surprised by the effectiveness of our offense considering Corey Davis and Delanie Walker were out. Is there any concern that Ryan Tannehill is taking too many big hits? He has taken fewer sacks through 6 games than Mariota did, however he does have a history of missing games due to injury.
Jim: Hey Jared. Well, there’s no doubt he took some big hits on Sunday – Ryan actually dished out some punishment himself, too. I think it goes without saying he probably can’t afford to take as many shots as he did on Sunday. With that said, his running threat makes him more dangerous. I’m sure Ryan knows he needs to protect himself as best as he can, and the o-line will need to protect him as well.
Kimberly Brown from Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Question: Hello Jim. You spend the entire game trying to get the ball from the opponent or keeping them from getting it from you...so...why is it if we win the coin toss, our coach prefers to defer to the second half, almost always? Stands to reason one would opt to score right off the bat. Why, Jim, why does he do this? My head wants to explode every time he does this. And how many times, at the end of the game, do you wish we had one more possession, ya know, the one we gave away at the beginning of the game. I’m sure there’s a valid reason, but I just don’t get it. Thanks for your time.
Jim: Hi Kimberly. Good question – Bill from Spokane asked me this as well. Teams do this because they’re trying to get back-to-back possessions at the end of the first half and the start of the second half. You can really change a game if you play it right. Some coaches, like you said, do like to get the ball first to try and make an early statement. But the chance to score on the final drive of the first half and on the first drive of the second half is an opportunity coaches love.
Jordan Newbury from Cushing, Texas
Question: Hello Jim, I hope all is well on your end! Hey, I have a wild idea! How about we fans quit calling for everyone's job, be it Mike Vrabel, Art Smith, or whoever! I think continuity could very much help this football team instead of a constant turnover! I think Art Smith is a very intelligent person, I mean c'mon, he's survived 4 coaching regimes! Therefore, why not give him another year to see if he has learned from both mistakes and successes? Personally, I am tired of all the turnover and would love to have a Belichick-like regime for 15 or 20 years!
Jim: Hey Jordan. Appreciate you chiming in.
Mark McMahon from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Question: My family and I cheer the Titans on from our home in Pittsburgh, PA. With the help of things like the NFL Sunday ticket for out of network games, we still cheer the guys on watching every game. But I got to thinking after watching this win over the Chiefs that it would be fun during my drive time this week to listen to the Titans Radio Network broadcast of the game to hear Mike Keith go bananas as the Titans rally for victory. He’s as much a part of the Titans heritage as Eddie George and Steve McNair in my opinion. Is this available for playback somewhere? The announcers on Sunday’s broadcast did their job… but I’d like to hear Mike Keith do it justice.
Jim: Hey Mark. This is a great question, and I’m sure Mike will be flattered to know you’re interested in doing this. Unfortunately, listening to the entire broadcast isn't an option. I checked with the folks at Titans Radio after reading this, and contractually they’re not allowed to make the whole broadcast available. But I've included a tweet just below where you can listen to the big plays from the win over the Chiefs with Mike's call in a 'Sounds of the Game' piece. Enjoy!
Carson Flanagan from Brentwood, Tennessee
Question: Dear Mr. Wyatt - I’m only 12 years old and a huge Titans Fan! My question is about the bye week. Do the players and coaches really get an entire week off? How does it really work? My dad let me use his e-mail. I hope that’s ok.
Jim: Hey Carson. I need to introduce you to Cason Romero, aka "the fifth-grader." I have a feeling you guys would be friends! Well, a lot of factors to consider here. Coaches spend a lot of time in the building doing some self-scouting, so it’s still a relatively busy week for them. Some players scatter early in the week and get away for the back half of the week, but others stick around the facility. All the injured guys usually end up sticking around to rehab injuries. Just yesterday I was strolling through the building and passed Corey Davis and Jayon Brown in the hallway, so guys are still around. They have more hours of free time, though, because they don’t have meetings and practices like they do during a regular game week. (P.S.: Your secret of jumping on your dad’s email is safe with me! 😊)
David Stewart from Liberty, Texas
Question: First of all, I'm not a fan of Tannehill, I still believe in Mariota. How well could you perform if you were constantly looking over your shoulder, answer that with a straight face. I've been a fan of this organization for 40 years but I haven't watched a game since Tannehill took over. If Amy Adams Strunk sticks with Vrabel and JRob, then I will not support the team again.
Jim: Well, David, you missed a heck of a game on Sunday, and three wins in the past four games.
Vickie Roberts from Trenton, Kentucky
Question: Hi Jim. I have a question regarding Sunday’s game vs Kanas City. I did not understand how Tannehill was ruled fumbling the football in the first half when he was down on the ground and had the ball by his side. What was the reasoning behind this ruling?
Jim: Hi Vickie. I thought it was a bad call, and I noticed one of the rules commentators said the same thing. I thought Tannehill was down, and he had the ball palmed against his side. The officials didn’t see it this way, and again, I think they missed it.
Jonathan Wright from Bishop Auckland, England
Question: Hi Jim. Amazed by Sunday's win against the Chiefs. Big shout out to our awesome D once again, they spend far too much time on the field, but keep coming up big time after time. Couldn't believe Kalu's FG block, on first viewing i was certain he'd jumped and was waiting for the flag. Great way to end the game. Still can't get excited about Tannehill tho', yes he lead us to a game winning TD and 2pt conversion, but short field and KC's D was so soft. Glad we kept pounding Henry this week. A question this time as well, based on our QB situation, where clearly the management team have given up on MM8, shouldn't we be doing what we should have done a couple of years ago and making a serious play for Colin Kaepernick, provided he shows he can still cut it at this weekend’s workout.
Jim: Hey Jonathan. I’m sure every fan base is wondering about this right now. You’re probably the 10th person to ask me this. I'll be completely honest -- I don't know if anyone is going to his workout. If a 'serious play' means signing him to be the starting QB next year, I think you're going to be disappointed. Let's face it: Several other teams have much bigger needs at the QB position right now than the Titans, who have options.
Michael Newsome from Drexel, North Carolina
Question: I am a huge defensive fan. When I was 13, I started watching football, which happened to be 1999 and Kearse is a huge part of why I gravitated to the Titans. I just wanted to take a moment and place some praise on our linebacker depth! I am from West Virginia originally, so I was extremely excited when we drafted Long. How huge is it that with Brown injured and Woodyard getting longer in the tooth, we have a guy that can step in as our 4th or 5th option at MLB and make a game-changing difference like he did against the Chiefs? I am so excited to see his progression over the next couple years, I really think he is going to turn into a hidden gem in our rotation behind Evans and Browns.
Jim: Right on Michael. Despite playing just 28 snaps, David Long was credited with eight tackles and he also forced a fumble. I was very impressed with his play and I think his future is bright.
Douglas Vaughn from Memphis, Tennessee
Question: Hey Jim, nice to see the Titans 'make a play' such as the fumble return and the blocked kick. Seems like upper echelon teams tend to do this on a consistent basis. But I wish Joshua Kalu had not been so honest about his cadence timing. You can bet going forward teams will not make that mistake again!! Wish he had just lied and said he was 'just guessing'. :-) I also wished the stands were a little more two toned blue. But when northern teams play here, Nashville is a 'destination city' so they are probably paying a LOT of money to get those seats. I wish the season ticket holders would be a little more stingy but if someone offers a price you can't refuse, I guess sometimes you don't. Nevertheless, Tony Romo said the place was rocking after the blocked kick so the blue shirts in the stands were sounding good!!
Jim: Hey Douglas. Kalu made a huge play – he timed it perfectly. As for the stands on Sunday, there’s no doubt there was a lot of red. Like Vrabel, I give props to the Titans fans who showed up and supported the team. The team has a lot of loyal, diehard fans. As for the Titans fans who sold their tickets to Chiefs fans, well, they missed one of the best games in the history of Nissan Stadium. And the place was rocking at the end.
Jefferey Fradsham from Crew, Virginia
Question: Hey Jim. I bet you are having as good of a week as I am! any chance Rashaan Evans will get a few snaps at tailback this season?
Jim: Rashaan Evans looked pretty fast, huh? But the team already has a good running back from Alabama …
Have a great weekend everyone!