The Tennessee Titans have won three times this year by a combined seven points, but three weeks ago it looked like things were starting to go right as they won two games in a row — one against Pittsburgh and another at Buffalo. However, the Titans followed that stretch up with an overtime loss to Indianapolis and then never gave themselves a chance in a blowout loss to Chicago.
The lopsided defeat left owner Bud Adams with no choice but to come down on his team, and a report this week used an anonymous assistant coach as a source that said everyone was in a sense of panic. Head coach Mike Munchak says, however, the report isn’t true and there’s no reason to discuss any report that doesn’t name names.
Mike Munchak joined WGFX in Nashville with The Wake Up Zone to discuss getting over two tough losses in a row, watching film of the 51-20 blowout loss to Chicago, getting Jake Locker back and a report that the team is panicking after owner Bud Adams came down on the team following the blowout.
Coaches like to talk about the 24-hour rule, but these last two games have been close. What’s it been like getting over them?:
“Obviously we all know the bottom line is we’ve lost them. I don’t know if there’s such a thing as one feels better than the other. Those close ones are always hard. I guess the first one is different, when it’s close, because there’s so many ways you can go back … and say, ‘We could’ve won that game,’ the Indy game that is. … And then obviously, last week, when we turned the ball over six times, after we got to a certain point in that game, there was something miraculous that [would have to have] happened to get back in that game. … It’s still a loss, still disappointing.”
In a game like that with Chicago, how do you handle watching game film of that one?:
“When you lose a game, I know people have a hard time following me, but a lot of good things still happen within a game. With this game, with so many big plays, that basically put the game away for Chicago. We made it easy for them to get the lead and play comfortably. That’s just something that a game like that’s probably never going to happen again. … You go back and watch it for sure. You realize how important the small things are — ball security, things that we hadn’t had a problem with before. I think we had two fumbles the whole year with the skill positions and we had four in one game. The special teams have probably been the strength of our year and we gave up 14 points in the first quarter on special teams. … We have seven games to play and a lot can change. It’s all about getting a win.”
You’re hoping to have Jake Locker back this week. Is he really itching to get back out there?:
“Yeah, for him, he was mentally ready to play, probably, last week. He’s been practicing a lot the last two or three weeks. Now, finally, medically, he’s been cleared as of Monday to go ahead and move forward. … That’s a huge positive, obviously. He’s been out for a while and he’s the guy we want in there.”
An article came out this week that claimed an assistant coach said the team was panicking after last week’s blowout and subsequent reaction from owner Bud Adams:
“An article that doesn’t name a name, to me, is kind of not worth talking about. I don’t know where those things started or came from, but obviously we feel it didn’t come from anyone in this building. That’s obviously not what’s going on here in any way. To me, you lose a football game, don’t play well, you’re 3-6, we should be uneasy, we should be disappointed in what’s going on. … We all know what it’s all about. We’re 3-6 and we have a lot of work for us.”