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Tuesday Mailbag: Jim Wyatt Answers Questions From Titans Fans After Loss to Texans, and Heading into Next Game vs the Patriots


NASHVILLE – OK, so that didn't go so well.

The Titans fell to the Texans on Sunday, and let's face it, it was tough to watch.

Mistakes and turnovers ruined the day, but now it's time to get back up.

The Titans travel to Foxborough, Mass., on Sunday to face a Patriots team that is suddenly red hot.

Let's see what's on your mind in the latest edition of the mailbag.

Here's the link to ask questions: CLICK HERE.

Chad Treadwell from Weston, Connecticut
Jim, Jim, Jim...... Well, I almost wrote in last week to say we have won several games in a row as an underdog. Now we will be favored in most of the last 7 games. Let's see how we fair. Unfortunately we have seen this far too often. There is no real way to say it Jim. This team (though they are beat up) simply cannot stand prosperity. All of you out there that wonder time and time again why the national media does not respect the Titans? Um..... did you watch that mess on Sunday? It is one thing to lay an egg as a road favorite, but to lose that way to a division team at home who may even have trouble beating a top college team (just kidding) is pretty inexcusable. You can't blame the weather... you just have to impose your will as the MUCH better team. Now we will go on the road and play a very solid Pats team up here in NE. I know we are all used to the Belichickian press conferences, but i am a little annoyed Vrabel did not own the fact he made a mistake not going for two on the first TD. Just say I screwed up instead of ducking the question. I am sure he does not want to even deal with a press conference after that game, but c'mon man.
On one other note it is very hard to be optimistic about the offense these days. Just about ALL of our real playmakers are on the shelf. Looks like we will have to have revert back to "Fisher Ball" to win games (most of you long time fans will understand that reference). You know defense controlling the play and winning games 13-10.
I am not panicking and I hope all the fans continue to TITAN UP...but you honestly have to say there are a bunch of teams that are more complete than we are right now.

Jim: Hey Chad. Sounds a bit like you are panicking. ☺️ … The Titans stunk it up on Sunday, there's no doubt about it. But this had nothing to do with not being able to handle prosperity. The Titans turned it over five times, including four picks. That's why the Titans lost the game. The defense played well enough to win, but turnovers killed the effort. And, there's no denying it's going to be tough to win on Sunday against the Patriots, who are favored by nearly a touchdown. They're red hot, and the Titans are a beat up team that looks like it needs a bye, and it looks like it needs some of its injured players to get healthy. Can they rise up and get one before the bye week? Well, they've responded well to adversity in the past. We'll find out soon if they can do it again. Vrabel, btw, said on Monday he considered going for two.

Jason Key from San Angelo, Texas
There's no way to describe the game against the Texans other than it was a mess. I was afraid that the Titans would play down to the level of their competition, and I feel like they did. Man, I hate losing to Houston.
There's going to be a ton of negative talk after this one, I'm sure. Tannehill has to play better. To his credit, he took the blame for it even though he is working with an incredibly depleted WR corps. I still believe in the guy. He has no rushing game to lean on right now. Losing A.J. in this one was awful.
To the positives, the defense is still playing well, despite being put in difficult positions. Much better than last year. We're still number 1 in the AFC and the South, despite the loss.
Probably the last team I want to see on the schedule this week is a heating-up New England. But they're there. Do you think we can put together enough of a run game to get the offense going to beat them? Also, any news on Derrick's recovery?
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours! Thanks, Jason

Jim: Hey Jason. It is a big challenge. Is it doable? Sure, but the Titans can't turn the ball over like Sunday. As for Derrick Henry, he is just a few weeks removed from surgery. He's still in the recovery stage.

Carol Thomas from Chattanooga, Tennessee
Shake it off. It was a bad day. Yes, it was definitely not what was expected but it's not the end of our season. Hopefully our team will get healthy and ready for next week. Question: How many of our current players have been called up from our practice squad to fill-in for some of our more veteran players?? It just seems as if there are so many of our veteran players on the Injured Reserve List or Questionable. It would be nice if as the season rolls on we could get ALL of our players on both the Offense and Defense to be healthy and ready to play all FOUR QUARTERS. Well, there's one thing for certain about (the Texans) game, we will have to listen to the pundits call this the biggest upset in the NFL. IT IS NOT but they will certainly play it up as one.

Jim: Hi Carol. Well, WR Dez Fitzpatrick, LB Dylan Cole, RB Dontrell Hilliard, DB Chris Jones, DL Kyle Peko and FB Tory Carter have all spent time on the practice squad this season, and all of them played on Sunday. That's too many. Yes, the Titans need some guys to get healthy.

Adam Kanode from Herndon, Virginia
Hey Jim. Good luck this week. Hopefully here to provide some much-needed optimism after that ugly showing.
1. We still aren't healthy. We have a bye week coming up and guys can still get healthy come playoffs, which we will be in
2. We always have a tendency to play down and get complacent. Looking at our schedule, I was secretly hoping we wouldn't win out. Anybody remember our 13-3 season? Bye week in the playoffs, but basically a first round out for us. I believe the team then had too much confidence and got complacent. Looking at the schedule, in order to get a loss, it would either be helping an AFC playoff team, or it would be an embarrassing team to lose to. Personally, I would take a loss to a team that has no shot of playoffs, not the Pats or Steelers
3. We will be ridiculed in the media, but who cares? This is the same media who has continuously not shown respect.
It was a bad game. We had a ton of backups in. QB struggles but bad routes from new WRs adds to that. It won't continue. NOW I'd feel more at ease with us winning out ;)

Jim: Good to hear from you, Adam.

Randy L from Yorktown, Virginia
I'm sure your inbox will be full after Sunday but I just want to make the point that we may have missed some of our best players but that's NOT why we lost this game. How many of our "next man up" receivers dropped passes? Not many. I grant you that maybe I don't know if they ran the wrong route or a bad route. Tannehill just did not play well and he's having a rough season as far as INTs go. ABSOLUTELY critical turnovers and play-calling by the OC in my opinion. Titan Up!

Jim: Hey Randy. Tannehill accepted a lot of the blame, even though others contributed. Sure, some of the INTs were simply bad passes/bad decisions, and they were on him. But on at least one, a receiver didn't finish his route. The Titans need to clean a lot of things up.

Steven Crosio from Brick, New Jersey
Hey there Jim, after watching that embarrassing loss to the Houston Texans do you think Derrick Henry will try and rush back in early?

Jim: No, I don't think he'll rush back early. When he's healthy, he'll return, whether that's this season or next.

Jesse Medlin from New York
wtf jim?

Jim: ikr. smh jesse. Ttyl.

Dave Warren from Columbus, Ohio
No question, just a vent, because...I love this team and accept the ups and downs of losses, THAT ARE EARNED! We did not earn this loss, we accepted it. Once again, we played DOWN to the competition!! We have the easiest remaining schedule in the league and yet we laid an egg vs. a 1-8 team...similar to the Jets game! There are NO acceptable excuses for that. Not injuries, of which we lead the league, not injuries, not turnovers. Of the seven remaining games coming into this match up I counted 3 losses...THIS WAS NOT ONE OF THEM!
Vrabel is a players coach and I think that's great. With that said, he needs to light a 🔥 under this team's collective backside going forward. The AFC crown is theirs for the taking...if they want it!

Jim: Have a great week, Dave.

Kev White from Salisbury, North Carolina
Only the Titans, Jim! We absolutely deserved this lost. We didn't play to beat the Texans. We played to see if the Texans can beat us. Well, we got our answer. With the litany of injuries our team is dealing with, we don't need to play against ourselves plus the opposing team.
I think this lost will sit extra uneasily with everyone because there was no positive. A division loss, the Colts are still hanging around to make the post season, and in a wide open AFC. I don't know about you, but I want that playoff bye.
Question: Do you think Coach Vrabel had some tough words for the team? Not sure I'd want to be a fly on the locker room wall today. Thanks for listening, Jim.

Jim: Hey Kevin. I'm not so sure the players needed a tongue-lashing after Sunday's loss. And, believe me, Vrabel isn't afraid to go there. But again, this loss was more on mistakes than effort. The defense played well. The offense moved the ball. But turnovers were a killer, and a chewing out doesn't necessarily fix that. The Titans need to get healthy. Even during the six-game winning streak I was concerned all the key guys being out was going to catch up to the team. The Titans didn't lose on Sunday because of injuries. But having some key players out – and less experienced guys in – certainly didn't help.

Brett Heard from Nashville, Tennessee
What happened to the play action and rolling Tannehill out? Saw a stat that in all of our wins over 30% of the play calls were play action except in one win (23.3% in Saints game). It was 9.6% this past weekend, 11.6% against the Cardinals and 21.1% against the Jets. Tannehill threw 52 times (also can't be a good stat in our winning games) but most looked like straight 3 or 5 step drops. They deviated pretty far from what has been a winning game plan so far this season. When Henry got hurt it sounded like the story line was supposed to be next man up with the same game plan, but so far not the case.

Jim: Hey Brett. Keep it mind it's also tougher to make play action work when you're down 12-0, and 19-0. And, without Derrick Henry in the backfield running the ball again and again and again, selling the play action isn't as simple either. The Titans offense is, once again, a work in progress unfortunately. Who is available from a personnel standpoint – and how the team fares early in games – is going to dictate plenty.

Mickey Whitson from Rossville, Georgia
1st time writer, long time reader. I know the Tannihill haters are going to come out today. Yes, he had a terrible day, no argument here but for some reason we always play down to weaker opponents. Spanking happened, move on. Next week 1st place Patriots. Let's get behind our team and show up and show out. TITAN UP.

Jim: Need a bounce-back, that's for sure Mickey.

Dylan Hernandez from Monterrey, Mexico
Hi Jim, it was a painful defeat, but we have to turn the page and learn from our mistakes. Do not panic.
I would like to ask you, in a normal week (without playing Thursday or Monday) what do the players do on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday?
Thanks for always informing us and being aware of everything related to titans

Jim: Hey Dylan. Well, on game days players usually show up 3-4 hours before the game. Monday they review film, have meetings, get rehab, etc, along with a shake-out. Tuesday is generally the day off for the players, although a lot of guys come in and get treatment, and they watch film. Then, things really get ramped up for the practice week on Wednesday. Because of Thanksgiving, this week's scheduled will be tweaked a bit, however.

Daryl Stjohn from Panama City Beach, Florida
Just one thing to say when we get to the playoffs at least there won't be any 1-win teams to put us out let's go Titans beat New England forever a Titans fan.

Jim: Good point, Daryl.

John Clark from Hampton, Virginia
Hey Jim and Tennessee Titans fans! I'm not gonna be that fan to flip on our Titans after this senseless loss to Houston. Once again we beat ourselves and the injury bug hurt us this game. I made the comment last week after the Saints game that our players are starting to look tired and sluggish and I think the players really would benefit from the bye week coming up. My question/concern is with Ryan Tannehill 4 interceptions plus a fumble and a ton of sloppy throws using piss poor judgment. Is everything alright with him personally or professionally because he looked like something was on his mind his head wasn't in the game and his game play showed it. A lot of people say Tannehill isn't the Qb that can beat you with his arm and after this performance all I can say to all the fans and Titans organizations HOUSTON WE HAVE A PROBLEM! Let's move on from this ugly loss and play Super Bowl winning football!

Jim: Hey John. I'm not going to get into Ryan's personal life. On Sunday, he played without running back Derrick Henry and receiver Julio Jones, and A.J. Brown wasn't out there a good chunk of the time. So being without those guys makes it tougher. Nonetheless, he has to be better, and he can't turn the ball over. That's his challenge moving forward.

Adrian Lopez from Caracas, Venezuala
Hola Jim espero estén bien tú y los tuyos... Te felicito por tu trabajo todo el año manteniéndonos informados...vaya!!! Esta derrota frente a Houston fue dura y fea no puedo exhonerar a Tannehill pero también entiendo que le toco luchar con un equipo casi alternativo... La pregunta es: hasta donde resultará la política del próximo hombre?? Es increíble que la fortaleza del equipo sea ahora la debilidad principal cuando la defensiva a dado grandes partidos y nos mantiene con oportunidad... Pese a todo TITANS UP...

Jim: Fue feo, Adrian. Pero Ryan Tannehill no está a punto de ser enviado a la banca, si eso es lo que está sugiriendo.

Juan Coyote from Cd de México
Buen día Mr Jim. Espero se encuentre bien, creo qué debemos mantener la calma después de esta derrota, las lesiones han afectado mucho, pero creo que también Mr Tanehill debe enfocarse más como líder de la ofensiva y cuidar más las intercepciones; nuestro General Manager se que no toma desiciones precipitadas pero cree que puedan dar una oportunidad en el roster de práctica a Le'Veon Bell, se que ya no ha realizado el juego que tenía cuando estaba con los Steelers pero talvez la línea ofensiva sea una buena ayuda en su juego. Me despido deseando lo mejor al equipo y su gran comunidad. Titan Up

Jim: Gracias, Juan. Que tengas una buena semana.

Walt Slaughter from Raleigh, North Carolina
Is it just me, Jim? How many Titans' teams have dropped games when they were the odds-on favorite? Our guys seem to be incapable of sustaining wins unless they're underdogs. I don't have the stats, but today is a case in point. Thanks. Would value your weighing in.

Jim: Hey Walt. I said this earlier: I don't think Sunday's loss was a result of a letdown, or it being a trap game. The Titans lost because they turned the ball over five times, and served touchdowns up to the Texans like a Thanksgiving meal.

Reuben Alvear from San Francisco, California
Alright, Titan fans. Let's not jump down the team's throat. Let's not demand that every single coach be
fired. Besides, it's the same coaching staff that the Titans had the previous six weeks, isn't it? ;-)
I don't believe the loss to HOU means the Titans are a terrible team. I believe it shows that TEN is not invincible,
and that they still have work to do. I don't care where the Titans are on anyone's Power Rankings, Power Ratings
or Power Point Presentation. None of that matters, anyways. Nor do I worry about where or whom the Titans are
playing. I get really curious about how the Titans are playing. I believe the bottom line is making plays when
there are opportunities to make plays. On Sunday, the Titans made some plays, but they didn't make enough plays.
Let's hope the guys can build on the positives (yes, there were positives v HOU), correct the mistakes, re-calibrate
and bring the noise against an improving New England team.

Jim: Good to hear from you, Reuben.

Henry Martin from Kingsville, Texas
Hello Jim.
Another "TRAP" game, I think all the doubters were waiting for this type of performance from our offense. As far as the weather conditions, I am only going to give 25% of the blame. Overall the defense played well, but when your offense cannot make plays when it counts and turnover the ball that put the defense in a bad spot it really does not matter. Note, a majority of their points came off of our mistakes but there are no redo's in this league.
I kind of feel bad for Ryan with the offense completely depleted with injury after injury but he knows nobody is going to feel sorry for you in this league. He is gonna have to put the offense on his back and somebody else other than AJ "HAS" to make their presence felt!
Enough with the bad, I think you will probably be hearing a lot from other fans.
Positives that stood out:
***The Rookies***
-Elijah Molden is "THAT GUY"!!! The real deal! He is a "TRUE" slot corner
-Dez Fitzpatrick showing Flashes
-Monty Rice second in tackles (8)
Nick Westbrook-Ikhine moving up the depth chart
-made some HUGE catches
***RB by Committee***
Some our fan base may have jumped the ship after this lost, but I am still here!!! #GOTITANS #TITANUP #POSITIVEVIBES

Jim: Points taken, Henry.

Randy Porter from Hendersonville, Tennessee
Hey Jim! I wrote this before the Texans game, after reading recent Mailbags. I swore I wouldn't voice an opinion on a defense nickname, because frankly I would rather see them continue inconveniencing offenses and improving, and don't care about a moniker. However, after hearing "Tennessee Tickle Monster", I have to say REALLY ? That sounds like a fuzzy, giggling toy, sold in country stores, reminiscent of one named Elmo. Possibly "Big Sack Attack", "Extreme Prejudice" or just "Pain Train" as we've heard in the stadium in years past, but "Tickle Monster" ?? If I tried shouting that from the seats, my tongue would fall off its rollers and the players would hide in shame. That said, and AFTER the Texans game, I defer to my first thought. Let's establish and earn a nickname, before worrying about a cute title, because "tickle defense" fit this game and that's not a compliment. The team is clearly struggling with continuity and never fielding the same players is a big reason. I did feel however there was a sense of complacency coming into this game. Not just the play, but the coaching as well. It lacked adjustments and creativity. This is not an undisciplined team, but the massive amount of mistakes suggest some things better change fast. The Colts have regrouped it seems and are playing serious football, so this can't continue. I hear week after week, complaining from everyone about "no respect", myself included last week. Well, THIS is why we're not taken seriously at times. We beat playoff teams by double digits, then lose to the two worst teams in the league and there is little explanation. If we want respect, earn it. That said, no hate, no need for panic, just play Titans football. We still control our own destiny and we will now see exactly how creative we can be and just what this team is capable of. Trust me, the players and coaches know all of this and it hurts them more than the rest of us. Have a great week Jim, Titan Up !

Jim: You also make some good points here, Randy.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

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