TITANS HEAD COACH MIKE MULARKEY MEDIA AVAILABILITY - Oct. 31, 2016
(on if he was expecting Andre Johnson's retirement)
No, he reached out to me last night, asked if he could come in this morning. That was one of the thoughts that I had. I had a number of them. The unfortunate part of it, it was, that's what he felt. He said he's been contemplating it for weeks and his heart was not in it. This is a tough business to be in when your heart's not in it.
(on the impact he had on the team in his time with the Titans)
He meant a lot. I don't know if he knows the impact he'd had on our wide receiver room, just how you go to work every day. I'm hoping they took a lot of what he's all about in that room because he's about as much of a pro as I've ever been around and great man before any kind of player. I'm fortunate I got a chance, even though short, to be around him.
(on if he tries to talk players out of retirement)
I try. I mean, I do because I want to make sure that there's no regrets when he walks out. But I could tell he had talked about it and it was really useless for what I was saying.
(on if Andre Johnson talked to the team this morning)
I'm not aware if he did or not.
(on what he told the team this morning)
The same thing I just said to you guys. I said the same thing about him, the type of man he was. Reach out to him. I'm sure he's got some mixed emotions right now. Hopefully, we'll cross paths again somewhere down the road.
(on the impact Andre Johnson had on the younger receivers)
How to go to work, how to come to work, how to study, how to work out here. I mean, all you've got to do is watch the guy, watch the success he's had over his career. He doesn't say a whole lot. He's very quiet and speak volumes with his actions. Hopefully, they got something from him. They'd be foolish not to follow a guy like that.
(on Andre Johnson's level of play this season)
Again, lack of catches doesn't mean lack of production. With the rotation, Rishard (Matthews) was getting more plays. Rishard was making more the last few weeks. He's made some big plays for us, and so the rotation was a little bit more heavy him. But no, he's still productive, still was in the rotation that we planned on moving forward with.
(on how quickly they will fill the roster spot)
We don't have to do it today. We've got a workout tomorrow with some other players. We have workouts every Tuesday. We'll make a decision at some point this week, but we haven't made it yet today.
(on if the spot would ideally be filled with a player who is productive on special teams)
That could be. That's part of the conversation. That definitely could be. Tre (McBride) would be part of the conversation. He brings special teams value.
(on if the weekend off was helpful)
I think it was good. I think it was good for everybody, coaches included. It's amazing what one day will do for you, catching your breath. I think it was good for everybody. Based on the way they practiced today, they had a good weekend.
(on if the weekend off came at a good time with the bye week a month away)
Yes, very helpful. It's been a grind. You think about it, all these teams—I mean, I know there's still some that haven't had theirs—but that little time off makes a big difference to these guys, to their bodies, to the coaches and the rest that they need. You know, they've been going pretty hard since July, so it came at a good time.
(on if the coaching staff watched the Chargers game on Sunday)
We were working last night. We were on our own, had the game on, but we were working at the same time.
(on how far ahead in preparation the coaches are compared to a normal week)
A little bit. All of us, I know I watched a ton all day yesterday. Do we have anything on our board? No, but we have a lot of ideas, more than we would have. We wouldn't even start until today, until I get done with you guys. So we're ahead.
(on if the longer week of preparation influence the decision to fly to San Diego on Friday)
That had really nothing. Just want to get out there, get acclimated to the time. I've done it both ways, won and lost both ways. I think it's good for us. It's a change. It's a little bit of a change up than coming out and doing the same routine here. I just wanted to get a little bit of a change. That's, I think, important.
(on the if Titans' record at San Diego has an impact on this game)
It's all different. It's irrelevant. Again, a lot of changes going on this year in 2016. I'd like to make another change.
(on if he did any self-scouting over the long weekend and what he learned)
Yes, nothing to make public, but I know us a lot better. I know what our opponents see—more on paper than film, but paper says a lot about some of the things we're doing. Not drastic. I was actually a bit surprised how balanced, especially offensively, we were.
(on how to disrupt Philip Rivers)
Well, we've got to put pressure on him and we've got to do a good job of covering these guys. Again, it's another group I think is very potent, a very potent offense. We've got to play again with consistency, go to the next game and play again very well and put pressure on him like we did against Jacksonville this past Thursday.
(on if the long weekend helped the team get healthy)
It certainly doesn't hurt. Yeah, we could use it and we did. Guys came in for treatment all weekend. I think, again, we'll see where we're at when we come to Wednesday. We gave some guys some time off today.
(on if the level of enthusiasm on the field is better at this time of the season than previous years)
I think these guys understand where we're at. We have to control what we have to control. We can't worry about other games on Sundays. We have to win our games and win the next one. That's all we're worried about. There's definitely much more energy. Again, that doesn't surprise me. I don't have to do a lot for these guys to come out here and work like they did today. I made it a hard practice after three days off, and I didn't have to say a word about their effort or how to practice today. It was very well executed.
(on if the knowledge gained self-scouting is shared with the players)
No, it doesn't trickle down. It's really irrelevant to them. It's nothing that will give them an advantage or not or give them any concern. It's just us.
(on if the self-scouting goes into future game plans)
(on if Tre McBride is hungry to play in games again if given the opportunity)
Tre (McBride) is very hungry. Tre works about as hard as anybody on our team every day. He has to simulate the other team's leading receiver, and he gives us a great look. And then, even today, it was more of offense than the Chargers. He had a good practice today running our stuff. I'd have no problem if Tre is who we decide to bring up.
(on if he likes the direction the receiver group has been going)
I think we've made more plays, we've been more consistent, we've been running our routes better. There's a lot of things good going on in that room. Give those guys credit. It's helped.
(on if Tre McBride knows one receiver position better than others)
He knows all, so that's an advantage he has. He's very versatile, and again, his special teams play will play a factor, as well.
(on if Tre McBride or Harry Douglas is better suited to play slot receiver)
No, I don't see one having an advantage over the other.
TitansOnline.com looks back at the Titans career of veteran WR Andre Johnson, who informed team of his retirement on Monday, Oct. 31, 2016. (Photos: Donn Jones Photography, AP)