NASHVILLE, Tenn. – There's no doubt the sense of urgency is increasing at Saint Thomas Sports Park – three straight double-digit point losses will do that. However, you won't find anyone throwing the blame around the locker room.
Everyone involved is taking accountability for what's gone wrong and continues to vow that the continued struggles aren't due to a lack of hard work.
"We're having growing pains on this football team at a lot of spots," said head coach Ken Whisenhunt. "You have to stay the course with the expectations and you have to be clear with how you expect it to be done."
One of the position groups Whisenhunt focused on was the wide receivers. The Titans have
notable talent at the position but have struggled to make plays consistently through four games.
On the Titans first two drives, Kendall Wright fumbled in the open field after losing his footing and Justin Hunter had a pass go off his hands for an interception.
"We've got some young receivers on this team that have a chance to be pretty good," Whisenhunt said. "I think for us to be more consistent as an offense, we've got to be a lot more discipline in what we're trying to get done."
The word process is one used a lot within this team. Both sides of the ball are learning a brand new scheme and the new coaching staff is still working to evaluate their players.
Whisenhunt did mention that they've discussed consolidating the playbook and game plan a bit to avoid some of the confusion in the details.
"One of the things we looked at today was streamlining it a little bit, simplifying some things and not having as much volume," he said. "That will give us a chance to play faster and a chance to be more effective. It's the little details that we're making mistakes on."
When asked about what he wants the identity of the offense to be, Whisenhunt explained that the flow of the last three games has taken them out of their original game plan. Much of that is in regards to the running game.
The Titans have faced double-digit deficits in all three losses which makes it tough to lean on a running game. Titans running backs had just 11 carries on Sunday against the Colts despite being fifth in the NFL with 5.3 yards per rush this season.
"You'd like to be versatile," said Whisenhunt. "We've been able to effectively run the ball even though we haven't
run it as much. That's the way the games have been going. You'd like to be a mix of run, play action, being able to go no huddle as well as getting some shots down the field. We just haven't been able to put it all together."
It's evident that nobody is taking the losses lightly – not the players, and especially not Whisenhunt and his staff.
"It's not easy. It's not easy for us as coaches and staff," he said. "You walk out of this building and you see your fans and you're disappointed. It hurts to be honest. Let's face it, we want to win. That's what this business is about. There's nothing better than getting that win on Sunday afternoons."
Tennessee will look to get that feeling back Sunday against the Cleveland Browns. The Titans return home for just the second time this season after playing three of its first four contests on the road.
- Whisenhunt said that Jake Locker was close to going on Sunday against the Colts and lobbied to play. He said Locker has a good chance to practice on Wednesday.
- Blidi Wreh-Wilson has a concussion and is going through the NFL's concussion protocol.