Hot Topics

Presented by

Hot Topics from Titans Coach Mike Vrabel's Monday Presser


NASHVILLE – Titans coach Mike Vrabel held a video conference call on Monday, one day after the team's 33-30 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Next up for the Titans is a game against the Minnesota Vikings in Minneapolis.

Here's a look at some of the hot topics from today's call:

Getting to 2-0

The Titans are 2-0 for only the third time in the Titans era with narrow wins over Denver (16-14) and Jacksonville.

Both wins came on late-game kicks from Stephen Gostkowski.

But Vrabel is quick to remind he considers the Titans fortunate.

"You're fortunate to be 2-0, but you also want to continue to improve," Vrabel said. "I think if we don't continue to improve quickly, these are probably going to go the other way. I think that's the message that we have to relay to the players, is, 'We're happy to be 2-0, but we're lucky in a lot of ways.'

"There's been a lot of good stuff, and stuff we have to clean up. We have to continue to eliminate the stuff that will get us beat."

High Snap Count for OLBs

Vrabel made no apologies for the high snap counts from linebackers Harold Landry or Jadeveon Clowney.

Landry played 72 of the game's 75 defensive snaps, while Clowney played 62 of 75. Outside backer Kamalei Correa, meanwhile, played just 12 snaps in the game.

"We are just going to try and get the guys in there – I don't know how many snaps is too much, or too little," Vrabel said. "We all have a job to do, and their job is to be ready to play every play and if they don't then they'll be ready to play once they get back in there. I don't really know how to gauge that.

"If they are healthy then they are going to play. … We'll try and determine each week how the rotation goes and who we have available."

When asked about the availability of outside linebackers Vic Beasley and Derick Roberson, who have been inactive the first two games with injuries, Vrabel didn't budge.

Vrabel said linebacker Rashaan Evans was used to rush off the edge some against the Jaguars because it was "part of the scheme that we had for that game and where we were putting some pieces, and moving guys around."

Defensive Struggles

The Titans allowed 30 first downs and 480 yards of offense to the Jaguars on Sunday on a day when Jacksonville also converted 10-of-14 on third down.

Vrabel was asked about the issues, and what needed to be cleaned up.

"I think it's always a combination of a lot of things," Vrabel said. "There's good football in there, things we have to clean up. We have to coach and play better. We have to get off the field on third down. … I know there's good football in there, but there were also some plays they flat-out made (on us)."

The Jaguars rushed for 165 yards on Sunday, with James Robinson running for 102 yards on 16 carries.

"It's called edge wall and swarm -- that's going to be the answer to every run game question that we'll ever have," Vrabel said. "You either don't set the edge, you don't have a wall, or you are not swarming, which means there are going to be some missed tackles. ... That's really what it comes down to".

Mask Comedy

When Vrabel was asked about NFL coaches wearing a mask on the sideline during the video call, he said all coaches have to concentrate on doing a better job in that area.

In doing so, however, the head coach provided a little comic relief by pulling up his face covering to answer the question…

Run Game

Titans running back Derrick Henry has 200 yards through the first two games and is on pace to eclipse his rushing total of 1,540 yards from a year ago.

But he's sometimes found room tough to come by.

Henry has already carried the ball 56 times, and is averaging 3.6 yards per carry. His long run through two games is 14 yards.

"They've tackled him," Vrabel said. "We have to coach better, we have to block better, we have to run better. It ain't about Derrick, it ain't about the coaching, it ain't about the line. It's about everybody coming together and doing a better job and coordinating it and blocking and when we block it well we have to run well and take care of the football."

Pass Protection

Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill completed 18-of-24 passes for 239 yards and four touchdowns on Sunday.

In two games, Tannehill has thrown for 488 yards.

One important number is he's only been sacked twice – once in each game.

Vrabel complimented the offensive line for its work in pass protection.

"Probably the best thing that group did (on Sunday) was to give Ryan some time to progress through his reads," Vrabel said. "We have to block better in the run game, we have to run better. But I think we at least allowed Ryan some time. It wasn't perfect, but there were time where he was able to get off the first and second read and progress through."

Next Up: Vikings

The Titans will face an 0-2 Minnesota squad on Sunday.

The Vikings have lost to the Packers and Colts in the first two weeks, but Vrabel said it's a dangerous team.

"This defense, they're a good defense," Vrabel said. "They're talented, they're well-coached. I think we have to be very concerned with this running back (Dalvin Cook) – he's dynamic. They have two really good tight ends (Kyle Rudolph and Irv Smith), and (receiver) Adam Thielen is fantastic, he's tough to cover in single coverage.

"They have two really good safeties (Harrison Smith and Anthony Harris), and their linebackers are active. So, it'll be important to get moving on these guys and to have a plan that our layers are confident in."

The Tennessee Titans take on the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 2 at Nissan Stadium. (Photos: Donald Page)

Related Content