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Head Coach David Culley


Opening Statement:

"First of all, just want to congratulate Mike (Vrabel), Jon (Robinson) and the Titans on getting the first round bye and winning the division. Good football team, played well today."

Have you been told if your job is safe for next season?

"No, I'm just looking forward to tomorrow with our exit meetings with our players."

What went into making the change to pass more on first downs in the second half, and do you think QB Davis Mills' second half performance shows what this offense will look like in the future?

"I think the reason we didn't run as much is because we were down three scores in the second half, and that's why we went to throwing. We went to a more up-tempo huddle, and when we do that, obviously, we have three scores down, and we felt like we needed to change the tempo to get something going, because we didn't have much going in the first half."

You mentioned that you fully expect Offensive Coordinator Tim Kelly to lead the offense again next season.

"Still do expect that."

How much of a conversation with General Manager Nick Caserio have you had today?

"Haven't had any conversation at all. We're just looking forward to tomorrow to our exit meetings, and then we'll go from there."

What does it say about your team that they were able to play so well down the stretch, beat one team in playoff contention and play two others really close?

"Today, we knew what we were in for with playing this football team. That's a very good football team. This football team has always played hard. We haven't always played smart, but we've played hard, and today I think we played hard. We played smart. Today, I thought our penalties were down. We just had a tough start in the first half and just weren't able to get anything going, but I thought we finished strong. Again, never questioned this locker room about how they play. They're always going to play hard."

What's your assessment of your first year as a head coach, and do you feel like you've done enough in your first year to warrant a second year as head coach?

"I didn't feel like we won enough ballgames. I feel like we needed to win some more ballgames. I thought there were some ballgames that we had that we could have won that we didn't win. Basically, I'm just looking forward to this offseason and moving forward."

When you were hired last year, what was your understanding of what set you apart from other candidates? Did they communicate with you what it was about you as a job candidate that they liked most, and the reason why they hired you?

"I'm not real sure about that. All I know is I feel like they made the best choice."

When you look at the way QB Davis Mills finished his rookie season, what do you think his upside is for you as your 2022 quarterback? Do you feel good about him being the guy?

"I feel good about him. I got questioned going into halftime whether I was going to make a change. No, not going to make a change. He is our quarterback. I feel good about him. Obviously, the way he played in the second half, the way our offense played in the second half with him directing it just goes to show that he's good enough to do what we need to get done here to win football games."

What do you expect the next steps to be as far as talking to Cal McNair and Nick Caserio, and what do you hope for? Is this something that you're very passionate about? Would you like to coach this team next year?

"As of right now, I feel like I will be coaching this team next year."

How difficult is it for you to not know for sure what is going to happen with the speculation about your job?

"I haven't had any questions or doubts at all about what's getting ready to happen. I'm looking forward to being the head coach of this football team next year. Haven't thought about it one minute."

When your offense went more up-tempo in the second half, what did you see in QB Davis Mills that helped him be so successful?

"Again, when you're down three scores and we went up-tempo, they play you differently. We were just able to get some things going in our passing game. Obviously, we weren't going to be able to run the ball like we wanted to run the ball in that situation because of getting scores and with the clock situation. It was just something I felt like I needed to do. I came in at halftime and said, 'Look, we need to go up-tempo just to change the pace,' because we weren't doing very well in the first half. We were kind of stalling out there."

When you have those exit meetings tomorrow about your future, what would you point to as the reasons you should be the head coach moving forward?

"Those exit meetings are all with players."

Whenever you meet with General Manager Nick Caserio to assess the season, what would you point to as the reasons to retain you as head coach?

"I'll let them make that decision."

With WR Brandin Cooks out in the second half, did that make QB Davis Mills' performance even more special since he didn't have his best receiver?

"The fact about it was when Brandin (Cooks) went out, basically, we just ran the same offense we've been running. Some guys ended up getting more balls thrown to them because he wasn't in there, not because of us changing what we were doing. It was just that the coverage allowed those guys to be able to do what they did. Had Brandin been in the game, some of those catches would have probably been his."

Is there anything in the exit interviews that you want to get across to your players?

"No, just the fact that I'm proud of them. Proud of the way they stayed in there. Proud of the way they bought into what we're trying to do here. Moving forward, better things for next year."

When you look at things that can be improved, what are some things that jump out to you besides the running game? Do you expect that everyone on staff will be back, or do you think that's going to be up in the air?

"I expect everybody to be back and I expect us to get better at everything that we're doing, not just from the run game, but our pass game. Get better on defense, get better on special teams. I think overall, we just have to get better in all areas, and looking forward to going through that this offseason. Self-evaluating ourselves and figuring out what we need to do to get better and then move forward with it."

What reasons from this year warrant Offensive Coordinator Tim Kelly returning to your staff in 2022? Why do you have so much confidence in him?

"I feel the same thing about our whole coaching staff. I've got confidence in this entire coaching staff, not just singling out one guy. I would want this whole entire coaching staff back."

When your offense went more up-tempo in the second half, why do you think QB Davis Mills worked so well through it, and why were you all so confident that he would be able to get that done?

"He has been very good in our two-minutes situations, which is similar to when we go up-tempo except the clock is not an issue. We're not in a hurry-up. We're just in a quicker mode of getting lined up, and he has done very well in that, and he was very comfortable with it. As a matter of fact, I asked him when we came back out, 'Did you feel good about doing this?' And he said yes, simply because he has been very effective in two-minute offense, and it's a similar tempo except we're not worrying about the clock."

What did you think of WR Danny Amendola's performance today? How impressive is it considering your history with him, his age, his size and everything else?

"Listen, his age and size is not an issue. He is a flat-out football player. He's been that way his entire career in this league. When he's been healthy for us, he has been very productive. Obviously, today he came up big for us when we needed him to come up big, but that's what I expect out of Danny. He is like some of those other players that I've talked about that have been veteran players that we've had on this football team that are pros' pros that do the right things, that are very good in the locker room, and Danny is one of those guys also."

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