Mike Mularkey Addresses Team's Effort in Monday Meeting


NASHVILLE, Tenn. —Titans interim coach Mike Mularkey was critical of his team's effort following a lopsided loss to the Jets on Sunday.

Upon further review – after watching film of the 30-8 loss on Monday – Mularkey still wasn't happy with the overall performance.

But he said the effort wasn't as bad as he initially thought.

"The effort was better than I thought it was," Mularkey said. "It was more a couple of individuals on plays. I am big into preaching — and these guys know, and the coaches support it — of finishing plays. Finish it to the whistle, and it was more of a player here or there.

"… We just want consistency. But it was not as bad as I thought it was in the post-game press conference."

One play really rubbed Mularkey — and Titans fans – the wrong way.

In came in the first half, when Jets running back Bilal Powell scored on a 16-yard touchdown pass by making his way through a number of Titans defensive backs, including cornerback Perrish Cox at the goal line.

Mularkey said he wishes Cox would've made a better attempt at the goal line. Several players missed tackles on the play.

"I addressed the whole team with it,'' Mularkey said. "So it's not just addressed with Perrish, it's addressed with the whole team. That's not what we want. We want better effort.

"You are talking to everybody so they understand this is not what we want. It is not going to be acceptable, and there will be the consequences if it happens."

Most players in the locker room on Monday agreed — the effort was not up to snuff.

The Titans fell behind 27-0 by halftime.

"That was a big step back,'' said Cox, who acknowledged Monday he could've aimed for Powell's legs as he approached the goal line to slow him down. "Overall, as a whole defense … it was a complete negative. It was a big step back."

"I didn't watch the defensive film," Titans tight end Delanie Walker said. "I can only watch the offensive film. You know, some plays, you can see us taking some plays off."

Titans tackle Taylor Lewan said he thought players gave it their all, however. "I've never played a game with these guys and ever thought that someone is not showing effort," Lewan said. "I think everybody wants to win just as bad as I do. I would never question any one of my teammates."

Mularkey did praise defensive lineman Jurrell Casey for his  "unbelievable effort" in trying to track down Jets receiver Brandon Marshall after the team left him uncovered in the first half of the contest.

Mularkey said the Titans had 12 missed tackles in the secondary alone on Sunday, which he called "unusually high."

All the Titans agreed on this: Anything less than a top effort on Sunday could produce embarrassing results.

The Patriots (11-2) are up next.

"They will expose you if we don't come ready to play and have that energy, and I hope these guys know that,'' Walker said. "I have played the Patriots when I was with the 49ers and the atmosphere is a playoff atmosphere.

"So you can't fold under pressure when you go up there. The fans are ruthless and they are going to show up, and the Patriots are going to show up. So we are going to have to show up and be ready to play football as well."


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