Pressure Is On

Pressure’s On
By Zack Cimini

Throughout the late 90’s and 2000’s one of the most dependable and consistent teams has always been the Tennessee Titans. They had a core of athletes that had ventured from footballs laugh stock to yearly contenders. Players like Frank Wycheck, Eddie George, and Steve McNair were always the main threats and vocal points offensively. With head coach Jeff Fisher’s strong work ethic and zero tolerance for losing, it all added up to a long term marriage.

Still, their yearly success never turned into that championship ring, and the Titans are a perfect example of how short and precious chances are. All of the sudden, Frank Wycheck’s body started to crumble, and soon there after the battering took its toll on Eddie George. George has never been a long-range threat, and rather is just a between the tackles and move the chains guy. Once his power started to depreciate, the Titans were forced to make the right decision last summer. Anyone that so how ineffective he was with Dallas last season, had to feel bad for the guy. He truly sacrificed his body for a long time, and his days as a running back are pretty much slim to none. The best possibility for George would be to convert to a fullback, as that would be a great combination with Julius Jones.

Steve McNair is yet another Titan that has remained a warrior and never used an injury as an excuse. There probably isn’t another quarterback over the last five years, that has played through more injuries. He still managed to produce, but last year the injuries just were too much for his body. The worse thing about it, was the emergence of Billy Volek. Volek came in and delivered with huge yardage totals and showcased that he can throw the deep ball just as well as Steve McNair. On top of that, his ability to spread the ball deep led to a new connection between him and Drew Bennett.

Volek isn’t even 100 percent, and their main starting running back in Chris Brown is also plagued and trying to recover. With the strength of the AFC, the Titans are looking to be in serious jeopardy of sinking to a new low. Steve McNair is obviously still the starter, but he will be brought around slowly in training camp. We’d be very wary in selecting McNair, and if you do make sure you snatch up Volek or vice versa. McNair still has the mindset of a Pro Bowler, and that can also be a negative. Last season, when he tried to play through injuries, he made a lot of crucial mistakes because his body couldn’t make the plays.

If the Titans can protect McNair from getting ambushed, a .500 season wouldn’t be out of question. From past years though, that isn’t bound to happen. The freak injuries just seem to occur for McNair, whether it’s on a scramble or a blindside hit. The heat is also on Jeff Fisher, as he has been coaching the franchise since the Houston days. If another disappointing season happens, it may be time for the Titans management to look in a new direction. Fisher has done a great job, and is still a top tier NFL coach but sometimes a change up is just needed. Time will tell, but it’s not looking bright for the Titans next season.


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