NASHVILLE – Rookie minicamp is under way, which is another step toward football season.
Just stepped out to open up another Titans mailbag, then headed back on the practice field for Day 2 on Saturday.
Appreciate all the questions and comments – my inbox is always hopping.
Let's dive right into this one…
Here's the link to ask questions: CLICK HERE
Mike Ruark from Berlin, Maryland
Question: Hey Jim, my question is simple. What's with the Roger McCreary pick? I like him and think he has the potential to be great but at 35 it begs the question, who's spot is he taking? Is this Farley insurance or???
Jim: Fair question, Mike. And, time will tell. I think McCreary was taken for a number of reasons. For starters, he's a really good player. I liked the way he played in college, and I liked the looks of him Friday at rookie camp. Also, this is a league with all kinds of weapons at receiver, and you can't get enough good corners. I also think the uncertainty surrounding Caleb coming off the ACL contributed to McCreary being picked. I do know the Titans are better at the position with McCreary in the mix.
Donley Canary from Raymore, Missouri
Question: Jim, twenty three year season ticket holder and long time Titan fan. I took the Titans to task for the their 20 and 21 drafts. Caught a lot of backlash,, but that is okay.. IMO first round picks should be players that help your franchise immediately and are cornerstones. Isiah Wilson wasn't and I believe Caleb Farley won't be either. However, the Titans did the draft right in 2022. Dealing AJ Brown was tough, but it brought badly needed depth at defensive back, running back,wide receiver and possibly our franchise quarterback. It will make our team stronger in the future; just may be not this year.Without the trade and movement back in the draft these players would not be available to us in the draft.
One thing I know after observing Mike Vrabel coaching for the past few seasons. He can coach. He will get the best out of this team. When it looks the worse, the Titans respond. I believe that is the influence of Vrabel. So.....don't give up on the 2022 season. The Titans will find a way to get it done in 2022. I believe in Ryan Tannehill. Three straight playoff appearances and exciting games for all of us to enjoy. 2022 will be more of the same!!!
Jim: Good stuff, Donley. And good to hear from you.
Randy Paltzer from Kaukauna, Wisconsin
Question: Good day Jim. Have the Titans signed any of their draft picks to contracts as of yet? If not, any idea why?
Jim: Hey, Randy. Yes, so far four of the nine picks have been signed. Here's the story: CLICK HERE.
Don Eichhorn from Broaddus, Texas
Question: Our receiving corp needs help...so why sign another db?... Mabin has been with four other teams besides the Titans don't understand some of these free agent pickups .. either in the twilight of career .. or coming off an injury .. like our no . 1 receiver Robert woods he is 30 years old and coming off a torn ACL in November..everyone else is mediocre ..or totally unproven..as in rookies..and with these receivers all different this year look for lack of chemistry between receivers and qbs...love my Titans but I do not see them winning there division..much less the super bowl..
Jim: Because the team also needed depth at DB. And by signing a DB, it doesn't mean the team can't also sign a receiver. This question makes you sound like a glass half-full guy, Don. Fill up the cup.
David Garcia from El Paso, Texas
Question: So much has been made of Tannehill and his three interceptions and poor play. But isn't anyone talking about the vanilla offense from the OC. I read an article that said the Bengal defensive players were saying they knew what the Titans were going to do by their formations and where the ball was going. Their not going to give away the playbook, but any rumblings as to the OC going to get more creative with the play calling.
Jim: Hey David. The Bengals players did a lot of talking about that game, and I guess they earned that right. In the end, they also finished as an also-ran. And, I've heard a lot of teams make similar claims while boasting. The Titans need to make improvements on offense, and there's no denying that. I'm sure Todd Downing has done a lot of self-scouting to improve and the addition of Tim Kelly as Passing Game Coordinator will help as well. Believe me, no one is planning to ride with status quo heading into 2022.
Scooter Lee from Tiptonville, Tennessee
Question: My family disagrees with the A.J. trade and we want A.J. back in Tennessee and I'm sure all the Titans fans do. What can we do to bring him back to where he belongs?
Jim: Hey Scooter. Sorry to say A.J. has scooted on to Philly he's not coming back…
Will Lambert from Paducah, Kentucky
Question: Hey Jim, first time writing. I truly appreciate what you do for we the fans. I tend to agree with the consensus that this WR group is a little light as it stands. I was wondering, were too many bridges were burnt when Julio Jones left? Since he's still on the market, I wonder if he'd be willing to come back to a system he is already familiar with on an incentive (availability) based deal. When he was able to play, he made a difference and would be a great mentor. Also, after my jaw hit the floor when AJ was traded, I have had time to process and love this draft. Thanks again!
Jim: Hey Will. Can't see Julio walking back in the door. You may need to have a sit down with Scooter about A.J. and Julio leaving … Thanks for the email.
Benny Ayala from Toluca, Estado de México, México
Question: Hola Jim deseo te encuentres bien, ya está en marcha todo lo concerniente al arranque de una nueva temporada de nuestro equipo, han pasado en los últimos días eventos importantes que nos dado motivos para pensar en el derrotero del equipo para la nueva temporada.
El tema de AJ Brown hay que dejarlo atrás ya no es parte de nosotros, es claro que en el equipo estarán los elementos que estén convencidos de trascender con el HC Vrabel, Jon Robinson ha hecho su trabajo de reclutamiento de nuevos elementos que lucharán por conseguir lugar dentro del roster final.
Nuestro QB Tannehill ha pasado por momentos duros desde el fín de la temporada hasta estos días ante la adición de Willis, es precisamente de estos momentos donde se saca a flote la fortaleza y se impone el carácter, estoy confiado en que será una temporada de éxito para Ryan.
Estará de vuelta King Henry y las importantes sumas de WR y TE, se ha dotado de buen arsenal ofensivo, que junto con la línea ofensiva abrirán las rutas de avance.
Nuestra defensa nuevamente tendrá la contundencia demoledora que observamos y seguirá haciendo estragos en los oponentes.
Nuestro Coach es el mejor, es capaz de hacer rendir un roster tan amplio como lo observado la campaña pasada.
Por tal motivo, me siento confiado del desarrollo del equipo esta temporada por iniciar, espero como siempre la lucha característica que los identifica e imprimen cada semana, a pesar de que no sea un equipo tan mediático y no tenga los reflectores de la prensa.
Saludos desde México, donde se tiene una nutrida comunidad Titan pendiente de su equipo!!!
Jim: ¡Hola Benny! Espero que todo este bien. Gracias por escribir. Esta es una carta muy bien pensada y demuestra que sabes mucho sobre el equipo. Creo que tienes razón sobre tus creencias. ¡Espero que tengas un gran verano antes de una divertida temporada de fútbol! ¡Ten un excelente fin de semana!
Roy Wright from Smyrna, Tennessee
Question: Jim. Just wondering why the Titans cant seem to get respect from NFL writers. Which most of them this next year dont list the Titans anywhere as having a chance. Which I guess I'm asking with the Defense last year and what the titans lost Jackrabbit , Brown and Evans and dane . Will they not be the same if not better having a full Bud and weaver back? Also on offense Derrick returns and finally picked up a decent TE. I know the schedule is supposed to be rough but last year with the injuries wasnt a cake walk . Do the writers just blow off the Titans or just not care about a small market team because they are looking for Big ratings instead of being right. And please don't AJ Brown me I think his whining about needing Julio and neither playing up to potential hurt the titans last year
Jim: Surely, we've learned our lesson from last year, Roy… Respect means nothing, and you don't get it by losing in the first round of the playoffs. The Titans need to earn it, and frankly, fans need to stop asking for it.
Tim Arrington and Nashville, Tennessee
Question: Hey Jim, Do the Titans scout the USFL games this spring and do you see anyone in that league being signed this summer….thanks.
Jim: Yes, and we'll see…
Jack Walker from Calabasas, California
Question: Hey Jim. Great work keeping us up to date during the draft. A couple observations, the Titans always draft good kids. In every interview I find these young men to be not only good players but good people. Love the choices. The AJ Brown trade was painful but necessary. Treylon Burks should be good. But don't forget, we're adding two more offensive weapons. Austin Hooper and the new guy, Chig are both oversized WR's...
I'd like to see one more guy added, Jarvis Landry?
Malik Willis was a great pick. I think we'll see some special plays added to the playbook this year.
Best case scenario, Willis picks up the game quickly, Tannehill takes us to the Super Bowl, rings for everyone then the Willis era starts in 23.
Jim: Hey Jack. I do think a vet will be added at some point, but it won't be Landry. A lot of other folks want him, too, before he signed with the Saints. I suspect the GM wants to evaluate what he has for a bit, and then go from there.
Chris Garibaldi from Kansas City, Missouri
Question: Jim. More of a statement than a question.
I think we all need to remember that Ryan Tannehill helped the Titans win the AFC and get the #1 seed without the most important weapon a QB can have, a reliable, rock-star, receiving Tight End.
No disrespect to the folks in that position last year. They made some killer, clutch plays. However, I'd argue there was not an every down safety valve like Frank Wycheck, Rob Gronkowski, Tony Gonzalez, Antonio Gates, Jason Whitten, etc. on the team.
Thinking about the recent past and no offense to Delanie or Jonnu, but even they fell short of what most QBs need to get through the playoffs and to the Super Bowl.
While I am crushed and heartbroken by the AJ trade (love you AJ!), I am hoping J.Rob and crew have acquired the difficult down talent required to dig through challenging games, particularly at the TE position.
In short, put a killer TE in that Bengals game and the Titans would have won. Ryan wouldn't have had to force throws to a beat up, hit/miss receiving core.
Just my two cents.
Jim: Hey Chris. Thanks for taking the time. Love hearing all the different takes.
Dan Burke from Goodlettsville, Tennessee
Question: Listening to sports radio and reading your mailbag for 5 months has stirred an issue that I have not expressed publicly so I am taking this opportunity. Let me start by saying that I am a huge Derrick Henry fan - both his performance and character; but I am also a huge Ryan Tannehill fan. EVERYWHERE I hear people criticize Ryan Tannehill and talk about how we need a new QB. Has everyone forgotten all of the games that Tannehill won for us in the closing minutes. Prior to his last game, almost everyone praised him and talked about how he was not recognized as a top tier QB. Do you remember all of the graphics that compared his stats to Mahomes and demonstrated Ryan's superior stats over the previous two years? Did he have a bad game in January against Cincinnati? Yes. Has Mahomes, Allen, Rogers and even Brady had bad games??? Yes. Here is what I want to point out about that last bad game. #1 - not all of the interceptions were on him - others contributed whether it was poor pass protection, tipped balls, etc. But he clearly shares the blame. #2 This is what NO ONE has pointed out. In that game we had 3rd or 4th down with less than 1 yard for a first down. Both times Derrick Henry was given the ball and he danced looking for the big run instead of using that powerful frame to hit the line as hard as he could. The results were that our beloved Derrick Henry (and I still love him) failed to get the short, <1, yard to keep the drive going. I think we all agree that the coaches should have used Foreman more and certainly on those two plays. I am tired of hearing everyone criticize and diminish the play of Tannehill and claim his success has only been on the back of Henry. Did we win any games without Henry last year? Hummmm - maybe Tannehill has value separate from the complimentary play of both he and Henry. Again, this is NOT a criticize Henry statement, but everyone is putting all the blame at Tannehill's feet. We win as a team and we lose as a team. Be grateful for what Tannehill has done for this franchise and stop the feeding frenzy.
Jim: Thanks for weighing in, Dan.
Have a great weekend everyone!