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Tuesday Mailbag: Jim Wyatt Answers Questions From Titans Fans as Jaguars Week Begins

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NASHVILLE – The Titans have a big game Saturday – a win-and-in playoff scenario against the Jacksonville Jaguars that will decide the AFC South.

But as I type this, I can't keep from thinking about Bills safety Damar Hamlin, who remains in critical condition in a Cincinnati hospital after suffering cardiac arrest in Monday night's game against the Bengals.

I've covered the Titans and the NFL since 1999, and a moment like this serves as yet another reminder football is just a game, like my late mother used to tell me when I'd get upset with results. These players are sons and brothers and uncles and fathers and grandsons and friends playing a sport they love, to provide for their families.

Their lives are more important than the results on the scoreboard.

Here's wishing the best for Hamlin and his family, and for all those that love him.

I know my family has been praying for him since witnessing it all unfold last night.

Thanks to all those who continue to write into this mailbag.

Here's the link to submit questions: CLICK HERE

William Bertram from Grants Pass, Oregon
Question:
Good morning, Jim...with the Titans having so many injuries and a QB problem what are the odds we win the division and make the playoffs and how far do you think we can go...cause I have watched every game this year and with our O line playing the way it has been I feel like we aren't a playoff team.

Jim: Hello William. Well, the oddsmakers have the Titans listed as seven-point underdogs. If the Titans play like they did in some of these games during the six-game losing streak, the 2022 season will be over on Saturday night. But this team is capable of playing better, and winning. We'll find out what happens later in the week.

Bill Holmes from Fairport, New York
Question
: Happy New Year, Jim, to you and all my fellow TITAN faithful.
So it all comes down to this - one game for all the marbles (thanks to the 2nd tiebreaker rule). While some laugh at how a team with a 6 game losing streak has a shot at the postseason, Glass Half Full Guy reminds you just how far ahead the Titans were before the house of cards collapsed. Hell, once Harold Landry went down it should have been over, but our guys - especially our defense - punched above their weight all year. Elton John once sang "Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting", and now that's what' it all comes down to.
The Jags are red hot. We are ice cold. Our OL is porous, our WRs can't get separation, our MVP is our punter and our QB is a journeyman who will celebrate his two week anniversary as a Titan when he takes the first snap. Logic would tell you the game will put us out of our misery and give our keepers a long offseason to heal and move on.
But Mike Vrabel will NOT let his team play without max effort, pride and guts. And THAT is why I will watch these guys, every snap, every play, losing streak be damned. TITAN UP, everyone!
(If you still need motivation, consider that we're undefeated in 2023!)

Jim: Happy New Year, Bill.

Bud Stein from Jacksonville, Florida
Question:
Happy New year Mr Jim.

Twas the night before playoffs and all thru the stadium
not a creature was stirring just a chirping #2 jaguar jenkins
saying henry was just another back
yet in previous meeting he was not able to sack
The jags players were all tucked in their beds
with visions of AFC south champs Dancing in their heads
thinking those lowly titans were surely dead
Out in the stadium I heard such a clatter
I sprang up from my bed to see whats the matter
A large bulldozer plowing the field
and 6 large men called by name
Go Vrabel Go Dobbs Go Henry Go Burks Go Simmons Go Autry Go Bullock
To the top of the Scoreboard to the Top of the AFC South
Dash Away Dash Away and all jags be Gone!

Jim: Oh man, I never knew we had so many poets out there!

James Kaufman from York, Pennsylvania
Question
: Good evening, Jim. I'm hoping we do not get into the playoffs. I'd rather try for a better draft pick because we will be one and done even if we do get in. I read that if we release Tannehill in the off-season it opens up over 17 million in cap space for 23. I think we really need to consider all options such as a rebuild. I'd like to keep Autry, Simmons, and Byard on defense all others can take a walk. Obviously we are now stuck with Landry. I don't know if keeping the king is a real solution to the problem when we need to rebuild as well. I think we need to let Haskins play on his rookie deal and go from there. I'm not even sure Burks is a keeper with as soft as he is. He's constantly hurt and is inconsistent. I do really like Chig though to end this on a positive note. I am a die-hard Titan fan and always will be. Thank you for your awesome humor and insight this season Jim .

Jim: Hi James. I've heard others say this as well. With all due respect, I just don't get this line of thinking – hoping your favorite team loses. Winning the division is an accomplishment, one that shouldn't be taken for granted. And, I think you should know by now you can't take draft picks for granted either. As for Harold Landry, he had terrible luck with the torn ACL. Saying the Titans are "stuck with him" sure is negative way to look at things.

Donna Carpenter from Madison, Tennessee
Question:
Hey Jim. This is more of a comment than a question. I was watching Bills Bengals last night and what I saw broke my heart. A young man Damar Hamlin went down, scared the hell out of me. Praying hard for him and his family. I never thought I would ever NOT want to see another down of football played until that happened. I'm grateful the powers that be stopped that game. Pray hard for this young man and his family. Thank you for your time. GO TITANS!!

Jim: Thanks for sharing, Donna.

Dave Powell from Loudon, Tennessee
Question:
75 yrs of football! For all the critics of 2nd string QB's, I witnessed a 3rd string QB from Norte Dame beat Purdue in 4th quarter after #1 & #2 were hauled away! That #3 was Joe Montana!
Give Josh Dobbs a chance! Smart QB! Played well at UT'. Now he has much more experience!
We may all be very impressed!!

Jim: I think a lot of folks feel like you do, Dave.

Beverly Powell from Loudon, Tennessee
Question:
Josh Dobbs will only get better! Give him a chance!
No Derrick Henry against Cowboys!
Titans Defense good! Dobbs new but played smart with a team he barely knew! A+ considering what he was given!

Jim: Any more Powells from Loudon out there? Are you guys sharing the same computer? :)

Gerald Hill from Mt. Juliet, Tennessee
Question:
Hi Jim...just an observation. I've noticed that Derrick Henry hasn't been braiding his hair for several weeks now, maybe it's time for him to go back to braiding! Not saying that the fumbles will stop but anything is worth trying at this point....can you make a suggestion to Derrick? Thank you!

Jim: I'll make sure to let him know, Gerald …

Nicolas Delamare from Laval, France
Question:
Hey Jim. Our season isn't over, we stay the AFC South Champs, this title is our title...So I want to share with you this and I start with thanking Rashad Weaver for his "My cause, My cleats" about Multiple Sclerosis...I have the same disease as Rashad's grandmother and when MS kicks my butt, it's a bad moment where I can't walk, I have problems for speaking, for reflecting and sometimes can't watch my Titans' game if my eyes are impacted by this MS. 6 months ago, I became President of an association who help people impacted by MS in my state in France, I meet these people more impacted than me, people in wheelchairs... But when I meet them, I can see their smile because they know I fight for them and I kick my MS and their MS..... So, to my Titans players, my smile and every Titans fans' smile all around the world will always be with you because I KNOW AND TITANS FANS KNOW THAT YOU WILL COMPETE FOR MAKING US HAPPY, PROUD AND GUYS IT'S TIME FOR KICKING SOME ASS IN AFC SOUTH !! BECAUSE WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS OF THE AFC SOUTH AND NOBODY WILL KICKING OUR CHAMPIONS ASS...And as our Coach Vrabel said , we have Derrick Henry and if I could add something, WE ARE A FAMILY SO LET'S GO TO WHOOP SOME ASS TOGETHER (and with the kick of our punter is more easy, LOL )!! Let's go Titans, Thanks Jim...Thoughts to Rashad's grandma and wish her the best against her MS.

Jim: Thanks for sharing this inspirational story, Nicholas. And what a great pep talk heading into the weekend! Take care.

Terry Johnson from Oak Grove, Kentucky
Question
: Hi Jim, something I have always wondered about and maybe you could give me an answer. When a player is on the practice squad and he gets called to play in a game does his salary increase for that one game or does it stay at the rate of regular practice? Squad players salary thank you very much I appreciate it. Happy new year Jim.

Jim: Hey Terry. When a player gets a standard elevation from the practice squad, of which a team can have a max of 2 per week, the player receives a salary at the increased rate of his minimum active/inactive roster salary for the game and not the lower practice salary. You can also sign a player from the PS to your active/inactive roster which would entail executing a new contract and he would be paid at the rate of the salary agreed upon in the contract, which most likely would be for his minimum. Hope this helps.

Todd Coleman from Batesville, Arkansas
Question:
Pass Interference (PI) calls are highly subjective. A call/no call can have a dramatic impact on the outcome of a game…the Cowboy game is an example. The PI on the Titans gave the Cowboys a touchdown. The no call on Burks took away a potential Titan touchdown. Will the Competition Committee look at making PI calls a 15-yard penalty? The committee should also consider taking away the automatic first down on the five-yard Illegal Contact and Defensive Holding penalties. Too much reward for highly subjective, and often one-sided, calls.
Signed - Bitter Titan Fan

Jim: Hey Todd. I can't see this rule changing. In the long run I think these things even out.

Diana Martin from Denver, Colorado
Question:
Hi Jim. Happy Holidays. Long time Oilers fan here.
Would you say going from 7-3 in weakest division in the league to missing the playoffs the biggest collapse in franchise history?

Jim: Let's see what happens on Saturday first, Diana.

Joni Daniels from Antioch, Tennessee
Question:
I've read a lot of comments here that suggest the Titans are done. Has everyone forgotten about the injuries this team has sustained? We played the Cowboys without many of our starters! We can and will beat the Jaguars! I believe this! I know I'm not the only one. I have faith in this team.

Jim: I like the optimism, Joni!

Terry Anderson from Glasgow, Kentucky
Question:
Jim, I don't know if it makes a huge difference to me if Dobbs or Willis start however, Dobbs is a much better passer at this juncture. We will be on the road in a hostile environment. Similar to the environment in Buffalo and we got beat down. Good news is It's Jacksonville and not Buffalo. Titans can beat them if they play. Byard is the best safety in league. Simmons on the line rested and healthy will be great. My prediction is it will be a close down to the wire game and a stupid pass interference call will put Jacksonville in position to win. Our secondary is still our biggest problem. Let's win the game and host a playoff game. We're really good at losing the home playoff game though.

Jim: Thanks for taking the time, Terry.

Andy Stambene from Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada
Question:
Hello Jim and all the Titans faithful hope all is well. Looks like it has come down to the last game of the Regular season. And the Titans are going to be shorthanded so the bookies are betting against the Titans in Jacksonville. Its do or die and just as important the future of many Titans will be on the line. Watching Dobbs the Thursday Night past showed he's the better option with Tannehill out of the lineup as Willis is not Starter material at this point in my opinion. Of course the OL needs to have some starters back and Henry needs to have a monster game for the Titans to have a chance. Hoping for Simmons to be back and the Defense to play stoic. The Titans have been decimated with injuries like no other team the past 2 years hope they pull it off and gain a play-off berth! Go Titans Go!!!

Jim: Hey Andy. Well, we got a pretty good mix of opinions in here at the start of the week, some optimism and pessimism. We'll do another one of these on Saturday before the game.

Have a great week everyone!

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