NASHVILLE – The Titans are 5-0 and good to go.
Good to go into this Sunday's game against the unbeaten Steelers, that is.
But the Titans need to keep getting better.
Let's see what you're thinking in this Tuesday's mailbag as we look ahead to what should be a good one at Nissan Stadium.
Here's the link to ask questions: CLICK HERE
Thomas Sircy from Goodlettsville, Tennessee
Question: I don't have a question, but I just wanted to give Taylor Lewan a shoutout and wish him the best in his recovery. He does not get a lot of the credit he deserves, and Tannehill and Henry would not have made a lot of the plays they have if it wasn't for him. " GO TITANS "
Jim: Thanks for taking the time, Thomas. For those who might've missed, Taylor was placed on Injured Reserve on Monday after suffering a torn ACL against the Texans. After surgery, he'll be on the road to recovery.
Asa Fitzpatrick from Lutz, Florida
Question: Hey Jim. Life-long Titans fan here. I have a question, but before I get there, I just wanted to throw some appreciation towards Ryan Tannehill. There's all this talk about Henry being the only good thing about the Titans. People are saying Tannehill is only paid to hand the ball off to Henry. Don't get me wrong, I am the biggest supporter of Henry. Literally, I love the guy so much. King Henry is a beast and he is carrying our team in so many ways. However, Tannehill is carrying our team too. Frick, Tannehill has been UNREAL this year. To say that Henry is the only working part of our team is obnoxious. So, I just wanted to shout out the man because he is leading this football team phenomenally and it doesn't go unnoticed from this fan. Same goes towards King Henry!;)
My question is about Vrabel. To me, if the season ended today, he would win coach of the year no doubt. Can you give any insight into how he gets these players to be motivated? How he gets them to believe no matter what the score, that the Titans have a shot? I mean, it's unreal. He is one of the best coaches ever, and I'm stoked to have him here in Tennessee. In addition, I know there will be several questions about Corey and Adoree in this mailbag, but how are they progressing? Corey should be back any day now, right? I thought Adoree was coming back after approximately 3 weeks, but now I'm not so certain. Is he near a return? Again, thanks for all you do. Go. Freaking. Titans.
Jim: Hey Asa. Good to hear from you. Tannehill has been spectacular. He's the team's best quarterback since Steve McNair, and he deserves a lot of credit for the overall success. He's 12-3 since taking over as the starter, with 35 touchdown passes vs. just seven interceptions while completing 70 percent of his passes. He's proven to be a gamer in the clutch. So, he's earned your praise. As for Vrabel, I just think he knows how these players are wired and he knows how to motivate them. I've talked to a lot of people who were around him during his playing days, especially the guys on those Patriots teams. They are not surprised that he's turned into one of the NFL's top young coaches. As for Corey Davis, he was taken off the Reserve/COVID-19 list on Monday, so he's good to go. Adoree', meanwhile, is progressing, and he continues to work in rehab. I'll have a better idea on him when he comes off Injured Reserve and starts practicing. Vrabel said on Monday he could do more this week.
Joe Arcudi from Merrimack, New Hampshire
Question: WOW.... Our offense saved the day yet again. Boy are they tough Jim. Feels amazing to be 5-0... my heart is still pounding out of my chest hours later. Now on the other hand...YIKES. Our defense has been historically bad and outside of getting Adoree back I don't see much relief on the way. Big Jeff is playing great up front but does not seem to be getting any help in terms of pass rushing. I also just heard that Lewan (is) lost for the season. This is a HUGE loss that really can't be replaced long term. Next week will be interesting playing the Steelers and that great defense. Certainly looks like we need to score 30 points a game to win. Congrats boys!!! stay together and keep it going offense!
Jim: Hey Joe. Definitely a blow to lose Lewan, who is a really good player and a tone-setter. Some guys are going to have to step up for sure. Same goes for some of the guys on defense. This Sunday should be a fun one…
Steve Radcliff from Paoli, Indiana
Question: Hi Jim first time writing in, I know coach Vrabel as input on the Defensive side of the Ball but how much does he input on the offensive side of the Ball or does he just let coach Smith run with it on game day's? Ps Great come back win on Sunday (5-0) Go Titans.
Jim: Hey Steve. It's Arthur's show. Vrabel sometimes sits in on the offensive meetings, and he offers some input, of course. But he lets Arthur do his job, and he's doing it pretty well, huh?
Andriy Lakusta from Edmonton, AB, Canada
Question: For those recovering still, hope they get well soon, and for the rest keep safe. Hate to say but this is more of a rant then any question, so here goes.
I've held off saying anything earlier in the season, figured I'd give them the benefit of the doubt due to joining the team late, in Clowney's case, and getting back from an early injury issue?, in Beasley's case, but I now have to ask, where are these guys? I think I heard Clowney's name once, and Beasley not at all during the telecast of the game this week.
Let's be honest the defense for the most part has been pretty awful this year, just check the stats, with the game against the Bills being the exception, and the pass rush has been probably the biggest culprit. Both of these players signed 1 year contracts, prove it deals as they say, and at this rate they're not proving much and will be lucky to get signed next year, never mind wanting a $20 million plus a year deal like Clowney has been hoping for.
Yes, they came back and won the game, thanks Romeo for a questionable call going for 2, and yes the defense got the stop on that one, but they never should have been in that position in the first place. Unless the defense, and especially the pass rush, gets better it's going to be hard reaching the big prize at the end of the season.
The Titans are 5-0, so yes we can all celebrate, but they need to get better and more consistent on defense and in a hurry with the Steelers coming up. Keep working boys, and hopefully keep this momentum rolling.
Jim: Hey Andriy. Well, I guess it's good to rant after a win as opposed to a loss. Clowney is playing with great effort, and while he doesn't have a sack, he's impacting plays. I saw a PFF stat recently that had him atop the list of players with pressures without a sack. Yes, he needs to get home, but I think that will come. As for Beasley, he's obviously still finding his way. There's no doubt the defense is going to have to play better, and everyone knows it.
Joe Simpson from Boston, Massachusetts
Question: Malcolm "TOAST" Butler strikes again.....JUST FLAT OUT DISGUSTING..... GOOD TEAMS DO NOT LOSE THESE KIND OF GAMES.
Jim: Hey Joe. Got this email in the fourth quarter on Sunday. Turns out you're right – good teams don't lose those types of games.
Jim Smythe from Burlington, Vermont
Question: AWFUL..... What a freakin Joke......Complete damn collapse and now the Steelers will beat us by 30 next week..... BACK TO REALITY... Here come the Tennessee 9-7's
Jim: Hey Jim. Your email came in a little after Joe's email. Not sure how to answer this one now …
John Sims from El Paso, Texas
Question: DISGUSTING defense....... Team going nowhere with this group. DB's are god awful...and no pressure at all. Ridiculous game to lose!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Jim: Man, my inbox was hopping in the fourth quarter (and I left a lot of expletive-filled rants out)…
Kev White from Salisbury, North Carolina
Question: Hey Jim! What a game!!! Let's talk defense for a moment. I won't say our defense is bad. We're certainly scrappy but in serious need of an identity. The missed opportunities by the defense during games, do you believe it may be due to not having a defensive coordinator? I understand Coach Vrabel is very hands on with the D but he still has the entire team to look after. I feel like the defense is suffering a bit because there's not that one individual with a defensive philosophy solely focused on defense. I may be way off here but does that make a little bit of sense? Is there any thoughts on possibly getting a DC? What's your thoughts? Thanks Jim!
Jim: Hey Kev. Thanks for waiting until after the game. My inbox in the fourth quarter looked a lot like my Twitter mentions around the same time. But you're right – the defense better step it up. I'm not going to make any excuses or speculate on how things might get fixed. The head coach knows a heck of a lot more about football than I do, and I trust he'll get it fixed. To steal his line: Coaches need to coach better, and players need to play better.
Nicholas Redmond from Poughkeepsie, New York
Question: Hey Jim just wanted to say thanks for planting that seed i asked you To plant about Firkser!!! Lol i know Smith going down lead to him getting more touches, but man!!! Did i not tell y'all!!!! Look at what he did with the opportunity!! Lead team in targets, receptions, and yards... and yet again came up big for us on that final drive!!! I love smith and he is our #1 big time!! Smith needs more targets too but i belive we have the best TE room in the league and need to find a way to utilize it more!! ACTUALLY i take that back!! I dont want Smith or Tannehill to CHANGE ANYTHING!!! I told my son, we can not criticize them any more because of how much success they are having i will take what little bad there is (not much) to deal with all this success!!!! THE TITANS ARE 5-0 BABY!!!! But i will criticize the defense cause woooow!! We are bad.. we play good but its always 4-10 plays a game where we look like the worst D in the league and i am nervous that against a team like the chiefs it wont hold up!! The Steelers are no joke and if there D can cause us to make a mistake or 2 like this week!! Idk if we will be able to come back like we did!! We can score but we need to play better D!!! ANY chance DEAN PEES wants to come out of retirement!!! Much love JIM!! And TITAN UP BABY!!! To 6-0 we go!!! LETS GOOOOO
Jim: Good call, Nicholas. I showed your email to OC Arthur Smith last week and he said, 'You know what, Nicholas is right. Let's get Firkser more touches.' And hey, it worked. 😊
Ethan Gray from Kansas City, Missouri
Question: I was wondering about Isaiah Wilson and Adoree' Jackson if there okay or not. Do you think they can make a return soon?
Jim: Hi Ethan. Well, Isaiah is on the clock more now. But the Titans can't rush him on the field until he's ready. Isaiah just started practicing last week, so he's getting there. But (RT) Dennis Kelly and (LT) Ty Sambrailo were the team's tackles when Lewan went down on Sunday, and experience is valuable. We'll see how fast the young guy can get up to speed and see if he can be a factor.
Eli Hamilton from Idaho Falls, Idaho
Question: Hey Jim! What a great start to this season right! This team has proven they can win close games time to time again. I love this start of 5-0 but there is no question are secondary is banged up and it'll help when Adoree' gets back, but do you know if JRob and company has thought about bringing in Earl Thomas to a 1 year deal? I know he's had his share of problems off the game field but I really think mike Vrabel can help him be a real asset for this team and help us have a better chance of making the Super Bowl. I know this sounds kinda crazy but I think he could help out our secondary and take it to the next level. Thank you!!
Jim: Hi Eli. Don't mean to stiff-arm this question, but Earl Thomas is a safety and the Titans have two good safeties. I can't this being a match.
Blake Collins from Saltville, Virginia
Question: Hey Jim, I really dont have a question more of a few statements..I know people dont talk about it much but I'll say this then move on. I really like the way the front office and Vrabel handled the Correa situation..Guy wanted out , they provided a way. No hard feelings and thank you for your time, Hats off coach and all involved! Now for the present day. The Tannetrain just left the station and its headed towards Nissan stadium and fueled by a 240 pound back and it's on course to hit Big Ben and the Steelers. The Steelers offense cord. Is going to have a tuff one this weekend... standing just yards away across the field is a guy that has superbowl rings for playing defense ...people are worried about our defense without a defense cord. They forget to realize that our def cord. Has won more championships playing D then the other guy has coached in...just a few things for our fans to have faith in....that is all :) Have a blessed day!
Jim: I like your style, Blake.
Joel Rye from Fleming Island, Florida
Question: I'm a big long time Titans fan. I had to move from TN for my job to FL. Had PSL seats and never saw the Titans lose then I had to move. Some might consider me to be a lucky charm I just laugh. My question is: Do you think we can beat the Steelers next week?
Jim: Hello Joel. Good to hear from you. I do think the Titans can beat the Steelers, but they're going to have to play their best game of the season s far to make it happen. The Steelers look really good to me. But, so do the Titans…
Have a great week everyone!