And I am glad to be along for the ride.
For the first time in a long time, we are about to witness something that a lot of Titans fans have been longing to see for years: A Tennessee Titans team that is up to speed with the rest of the NFL. We finally have a set of coaches that realizes an offense needs to be able to pass and score points to be successful. They realize the value of the skill positions beyond running-back, drafting a wide receiver at a time when it seemed we were deep at the position. It used to be hard to imagine the Titans drafting a wide receiver that high unless it was the most obvious glaring weakness on our team, and even then it wasn't exceedingly likely. They realize the importance of versatile players, as our defensive line up can attest to. The Titans are finally up to speed from a coaching standpoint.
On offense, we finally have a group of play makers that can legitimately be explosive. We are finally entering a season where I don't feel like our offense will be holding us back with their ineptitude. We have some young talent at all skill positions (especially if Kenny Britt wakes up and decides to be a professional), and if only half those players can grow into their potential then we will have a formidable offense for years to come. And regardless of where you stand in the quarterback debate (and I think everyone knows everyone's opinion by now) we can all agree on the fact that we are arguing over a quarterback of the future and a feisty veteran instead of a quarterback with no future and a feisty drunk.
On defense we have gotten a serious infusion of youth as well. We have 2 young, talented 2nd year linebackers and a solid veteran. We have a rookie linebacker that appears ready to make an immediate impact. We could be set at linebacker for a decade with this squad. Despite the loss of Cortland Finnegan, we have 2 above average corners and a ton of backup corners with the potential to be great. We have a great rotation of young defensive tackles as well, with one being an excellent pass rusher, a rare quality in such a young tackle. Sure we have question marks at safety and defensive end, but recent dominant teams have shown us it's usually far easier to have questions on defense than on offense.
Some of this may seem overly optimistic. It very well may prove to be. We have a tough schedule this year and we are counting on an absolute glut of first and second year players to be major impacts for us this season. The only thing I can definitively say is that for the first time in a long time, I'm not going into a season just hoping to have hope for the next season. We have no external factors holding us back, no shoulder pads to signify the towel we are throwing in. The only thing to do now is to play the games.
Coach Munchak has made good on his promise. Our Titans aren't the same damn 3 point team they used to be.