NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Members of the Titans reacted Monday to the team's fifth consecutive loss, a 43-24 road defeat against the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 12 at Lincoln Financial Field.
Ken Whisenhunt held his weekly 'day after game' press conference. Here are the top five topics from the Titans head coach.
5. Injury Update
It's a laundry list so take a deep breath…
• Bishop Sankey does not have a concussion but suffered a stinger and his shoulder went numb, causing him to lose control of the football during his second half fumble.
• Dexter McCluster is going through the concussion protocol. Whisenhunt said he's feeling much better today and that he's optimistic he'll be alright this week.
• Kamerion Wimbley has a hamstring strain.
• Whisenhunt had no updates on Brian Schwenke (knee) or Taylor Lewan (ankle) but did say that Lewan's ankle is not broken.
• Michael Griffin is dealing with the dislocated shoulder that he had popped back in place yesterday. Whisenhunt commended the safety's toughness to return to the game and is hopeful he'll be able to go in week 13.
- Delanie Walker's Career Day**
Walker set a career high with 155 receiving yards against the Eagles which stands as the top tight end performance in the NFL this season. Whisenhunt said there's no question he was missed against the Steelers last Monday and that he's glad to have Walker healthy again.
"He's obviously done a lot of great things for us this year," Whisenhunt said. "To see that speed show up, I've seen it when he was an opponent in San Francisco. I've seen him return a kickoff so you know the guy can run. When the ball gets in his hands there's a whole other gear for him."
Despite missing one game due to injury, Walker leads the Titans in receiving yards with 667 and is tied for the team-lead in touchdowns with four. His 667 receiving yards trails only Rob Gronkowski (812) and Greg Olson (719) among NFL tight ends.
3. Zach Mettenberger's Toughenss/Progression
Mettenberger was sacked five times and hit nine times by the Eagles' defense Sunday. Some of that blame might fall on the QB's shoulders, but Whisenhunt likes what he's seeing from the rookie from a toughness standpoint.
"He's doing a much better job of moving around in the pocket," said Whisenhunt. "We saw progress of that yesterday and that's an encouraging thing. You're going to take some shots back there as a quarterback. I don't think there are many times you make it through a game cleanly, but yes, he is tough."
Whisenhunt said it's particularly impressive to be able to stand in the pocket and take a hit after coming off of an ACL tear.
"One of the things you look at is how relatively new he is coming off of his ACL injury and the confidence he has to stand in there and move around and throw the football," he said. "That speaks a lot about how hard he's worked to get to this point."
2. Selfie-Gate Rematch
Before Mettenberger made his first career start in Week 8 against Houston, the rookie made waves on social media with his "selfies." Since then, the long hair has been cleaned up and the social media jokester has turned down the comedy.
"He's got some good guys in the room that help with that and he's understanding the urgency of playing that position," Whisenhunt said. "We haven't currently spoken about that but he's doing a nice job with it."
J.J. Watt went on record following the game as someone who took exception to Mettenberger's use of social media.
"If I was a rookie quarterback being named the starter for the first time in the league, I feel like I'd be a little bit more focused than that. Maybe he'll learn from it, maybe not," were Watt's exact words.
Whisenhunt said Monday that he wouldn't be surprised if Mettenberger has some fun with the situation later in the week.
"Zach's got a good sense of humor," he said. "He's a pretty witty guy sometimes so as a sarcastic way of doing things, no I wouldn't be surprised by that."
1. Whisenhunt Tells it like it is
The Titans head coach was pretty candid when discussing the team's 2-9 record.
"I have a sick feeling in my stomach all the time," he said. "Nothing changes that except when you win. It's not a lot of fun. I enjoy working with these guys and I enjoy being here. I want to win ... You feel sick when you don't do what you're supposed to."
In unrelated news to the Titans, Kansas City Chiefs safety Eric Berry has been place on the "non-injury" list after an MRI revealed a mass in Berry's chest. The team doesn't have an official prognosis, but some media reports suggest that Berry has lymphoma. It's truly heartbreaking news. My thoughts and prayers go out to him and his family.