The Tennessee Titans came within one win of reaching the Super Bowl, a place they haven’t been to since 1999. What’s the future hold for Mike Vrabel’s club?
The Tennessee Titans knocked off the defending Super Bowl champions and then the team with the best record in the NFL, both on the road. And they owned a 17-7 second-quarter lead over the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium in the AFC Championship Game.
Mike Vrabel and the Titans dropped four of their first six in 2019, made a switch at quarterback, started stressing the ground game and were back in the playoffs for the second time in three years. Still, the franchise hasn’t won at least 10 regular-season games or a division title since 2008.
So what’s ahead for a club that made giant strides as this year unfolded?
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So What’s Next?
The Titans’ impressive stretch run and their postseason performance was a product of many things. And some of the key performers are slated to become unrestricted free agents as in running back Derrick Henry, cornerback Logan Ryan and quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
In fact, five-year signal-caller Marcus Mariota — the second overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft — could also test the open market so the franchise has a big decision to make. And the Titans are also in the hunt for a new defensive coordinator with the retirement of Dean Pees.
Biggest Offseason Concern?
There’s still some work to do on defense if the team is going to continue to progress and it will be interesting to see who replaces Pees. In any case, Vrabel’s club must do a better of consistently slowing down opposing offenses going forward.
Tennessee finished 21st in the league in total defense and 24th in the NFL vs. the pass. The club allowed 39 offensive touchdowns in 16 regular-season outings despite a respectable 43 sacks and 23 takeaways and was next-to-last in the league in touchdown percentage (68.1) allowed inside-the-20.
The Tennessee Titans have put together four consecutive 9-7 campaigns, the last two resulting in playoff appearances under head coaches Mike Mularkey (2017) and Vrabel. In each instance, the franchise was able to win at least one postseason game.
This is a talented team with a number of young and up-and-coming players and general manager Jon Robinson has done a solid job. All told, getting the talented and still-young Henry under wraps has to be priority one this offseason.