NASHVILLE – We're now less than a week before the start of free agency.
And, we're at the start of another Titans mailbag.
I'm jumping right in….
Here's the link to submit questions: CLICK HERE
Alondra and Joe Faz from San Antonio, Texas
Question: Hello Mr Wyatt! My 7-year-old daughter and I were having a deep conversation about rumors we read with possibly trading away our greatest running back ever...Derrick Henry. We decided that we would reach out to you so that you could relay to our new GM that we would like to keep Derrick Henry on our Tennessee Titans Football team until he decides to retire. Trading away The King would be a disastrous move for us and all of Titans fans. We know you will be close to our new GM and thought that maybe you can forward this request to him in person as soon as possible. With much thanks...Alondra and Joe :-)
Jim: Hello Alondra and Joe! I've seen the same "rumors" from the national folks, and I know there's been a lot of buzz around town this week ... about Vanderbilt basketball. And, yes, about Derrick Henry. Working for the team, I can only say so much about Derrick. But it's rumor mill season, so buckle up. I'll forward this to the GM. As you'll find, a lot of others emailed me this week about Derrick as well.
Ryan Brooks from Silver Spring, Maryland
Question: Hey Jim. It's time to be super bold. Let's play a game of "If I was the Titan's GM". Here's what I'd do ...
Essential free-agent pickup:
1. starting LT
Wait until 2024 to re-sign Jeff Simmons
Draft pickups (no-trade scenarios)
2) OLB/DT (Best available at either position)
Way too early prediction of starters:
QB: R. Tannehill
RB: D. Henry
WR: T. Burks, Draft Pick, K. Phillips
OL: LT (Free Agent), LG (J. Roos), C (Draft Pick / B. Jones), RG (N. Davis), RT (N. Petit-Frere)
TE: C. Okonkwo, A. Hooper
DL: D. Autry, J. Simmons, T. Tart
LB: R. Weaver, D. Long, M. Rice, H. Landry
CB: K. Fuller, R. McCreary
S: K. Byard, A. Hooker
K: C. Shudak
LS: M. Cox
P: R. Stonehouse
You can't say I didn't warn you that this email would contain bold predictions! :-)
Jim: Hey Ryan. You did a good job on this, but you're going to be wrong with some of these predictions. 😊
Still, a good effort on your part. I like the creativity.
Jacob Sain from Mountain Grove, Missouri
Question: Hey Jim! I really enjoyed listening to you do a live mailbag with the OTP. You referenced ruffling some feathers back in the day as a beat writer, and I was wondering if there was a particularly memorable or awkward story you felt comfortable sharing. Whether it was a coach like Washburn or Heimerdinger chewing you out, or maybe a player that took exception to you. Whatever comes to mind, I know I'd love hearing about it!
Jim: Appreciate it, Jacob. Well, I have a lot of memorable stories – too many to list in here. But two with interesting behind-the-scenes info come to mind: Back in 2005, I reported in the Sunday version of The Tennessean the Titans were going to release six well-known players to get below the salary cap: receiver Derrick Mason, cornerback Samari Rolle, defensive lineman Kevin Carter, right tackle Fred Miller, fullback Robert Holcombe and kicker Joe Nedney. It was a mammoth story, and it stirred up a lot of emotions from the players, and other members of the media. Some of the players balked at my report because it was news to them, and I remember some reporters questioning the report/suggesting it was wrong. One reporter actually quoted some of the players, aiming to dismiss my report. The next day, late GM Floyd Reese called a press conference and then proceeded to read off the names of those six players. I found out later some of the players were upset with me because they'd discovered their fate in the newspaper. Floyd was steaming man, trying to figure out my sources for the story. He was steaming mad. Hey, I was just doing my job. … Another memorable story I did was in 2012, when late Titans owner Bud Adams called me to tell me he wanted to sign then-free agent Peyton Manning. Mr. Adams said he was willing to spend what he had to spend to make it happen. Adams called me after he'd grown frustrated with his own decision-makers at the time – GM Manager Ruston Webster, Chief Operating Officer Mike Reinfeldt and head coach Mike Munchak. He'd been telling them the same thing for days, but he felt like they weren't taking him seriously enough/hadn't acted on his requests. He wanted to get the news out to the masses, so he called me. Needless to say, it was an awkward situation for everyone. The Titans immediately dove into the Peyton Manning sweepstakes after that. Manning eventually opted to sign with the Broncos, but that story set off a firestorm. I have a whole bunch more – some really juicy stuff – but you'll have to wait until my next book comes out... 😊
Al Anderson from Waldorf, Maryland
Question: I couldn't believe tv reports....the titans are trying to trade Derrick Henry.......Tannehill most likely remain with team for the 2023 ......the main reason for most of titans victories last season was DERRICK HENRY......NOT Tannehill ...outside of the 6-8 yard slant...you could not trust Tannehill .....price tag...Henry base salary 10.5 million...Tannehill has a base salary of 27 million but a 36.6 million cap hit in 2023.....now ..which one of these players have the best value.....DERRICK HENRY......take the money from Tannehill and pay for an offensive line...Dobbs seems to move the team with very little time around the team...KEEP HOF DERRICK HENRY
Jim: Thanks for taking the time, Al.
Derek McMillan from Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Question: From the combine , in your opinion what left tackles and wr's do you feel would be a good fit for the titans. Sorry if this has been ask. #TITANUP#
Jim: Hey Derek. I think most folks agree the top tackles are Ohio State's Paris Johnson Jr. and Northwestern's Peter Skoronski, although Tennessee's Darnell Wright is surging. As for the receivers, a whole bunch to choose from. Not sure which guys I love the most yet. Ask me in a month.
Terence Taylor from Memphis, Tennessee
Question: Morning Jim. My question is about Henry. 1st is there's update and is the rumors are true? Because if we lose Henry who's to say these running backs can have an impact right away. Some look in good in college be the NFL is a GROWN MANS GAME. I hope Tennessee think twice about certain decisions and 2nd Big Jeff are they in negotiation with him about a new contract or they going to let him walk to?
Jim: The only update I can give you in Derrick, Terence, is he is still with the Titans. And, which rumor do you want to believe? Also, Jeffery Simmons is under contract for 2023.
Fred Trotman from St. Louis, Missouri
Question: No question just venting. Disappointed to hear about us possibly trading Derrick Henry. I keep hoping it's a false report but if it isn't then it seems that either we're gearing up for a rebuild and the front office hasn't learned it's lesson from trading away AJ last year. Or the front office just simply hasn't learned its lesson from trading away AJ last year. Either way I don't like it. I understand it's to clear cap space but there are plenty of other people who need to leave or are expendable before Derrick. This RB draft class isn't that good and our RB depth isn't ready to take this hit. Still hoping to wake up from this terrible fake dream.
Jim: Good to hear from you, Fred.
Will Anderson from Tracy City, Tennessee
Question: Derrick Henry is the face and backbone of the Titans! What is going on?? If we lose Henry, what???? I don't like this!
Jim: Hang in there, Will.
Heather Mims from Columbus, Ohio
Question: Hello jim How are you today
I been a Titan Fan since 2015 and Here it is 2023
I been Hearing lots of Rumors about Derrick Henry's Trade why on earth they wanna trade one of the Best Running Back on the Titans Team plus He loves the Titans They like a Family to Him we are fans of Derrick Henry big Time Henry is a part of the soccer team in Nashville Tennessee then 2 when are they gonna pay Jeffery Simmons He Love Being Here in Tennessee and the Titans Jim Wyatt can you please Talk to GM RAN CARTHON PLEASE DO NOT TRADE OUR MAIN RUNNING BACK PLEASE!
Thank you we Need Him then 3 why The Titans Don't get Rid of Ryan Tannehill? I'm still feeling Disappointed in him because The way He was Holding The Ball to Long always getting sacked also throws so many Interceptions so many Times when are they gonna find a Real Quarterback that doesn't Get sacked and Throw Interception Please Jim I need Answers I'm tired of this Rumors about this trading thanks.
Jim: Buckle up, Heather. The rumor-mill season is just beginning…
Alan Ray from College Grove, Tennessee
Question: Why is there talk of trading Derrick? Seriously. I'm sure a lot of mail will be on this very subject. Surely, Ran wouldn't come in and dump a RB who gained 1500 yards behind the worst O-Line in football, would he? We already made one stupid move trading AJ. I think Fans would revolt big time if we made another blunder of that magnitude. Derrick Henry IS the Titans. What can you tell us about this, Jim? Oh, one more thing. My stomach is still turning at hearing Tim Kelly say "I don't think we were predictable last year." Say what?! It's one thing to not throw the former OC under the bus and quite another to not acknowledge the grim and glaring reality of last season. I'm shakin' my head. Why would he say that when it was so obvious to anyone who watched the Titans play? That is really bothersome to hear. Mike Moraitis put Kelly's words this way in his article, "I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and go with that as an explanation for his comments here because nobody in their right mind can say this offense wasn't predictable." And Mike ain't alone...by a long shot. And you say?
Jim: You're right – a lot of mail on this subject. As for the responses to what Tim Kelly said at the combine, frankly, I really don't care how others interpreted what he said. Makes zero difference to me. The only thing that matters is how he does as O.C. this fall and beyond.
Have a great weekend everyone!