So last night I was sitting at a No-Limit Hold 'em table at Borgata in Atlantic City. Anyone who has ever played at a public poker table knows that conversation at poker tables almost always touches on sports and sports gambling. The guy next to me was bending my ear about the Eagles, and moronically broke down why their game plan last week against New Orleans sucked. He asked me who my team was, and I said, "I am a die-hard Tennessee Titan fan." The Eagles fan got on the proverbial soapbox, and started explaining why the Titans should have never canned Fisherball. I put my headphones back on, because I am so sick of hearing New York and national people romanticize the stache.
Meanwhile the guy to my left turned to me and said, "Are you talking about the Tennessee Titans?" And then roughly, the following conversation ensued.
Me: Yup. Why?
Him: Oh, one of my best friends was just an assistant there.
Me: (I figured where this was going, since Chet is a Jersey fellow and all) oh, who?
Him: guy named Parlacecchio
Me: of course, LB coach...how do you know him?
Him: We grew up together. He was in my brother's wedding, just real good friends.
Me: What does he have to say about all the change?
Him: Well, he appreciated the loyalty from Munch, but Chet had a feeling that a lot of changes were going to be made as soon as the owner died. Chet said that the owner wanted him to fire 5 of his 6 assistants. Chet knew he was the first one out the door.
Me: So thats really true what the media got ahold of about the situation? He say anything else?
Him: (Paraphrasing a bit, but I took some notes) Chet was brought in there to do a crappy job. Munch felt that it was really important to have someone enforce discipline in the locker room, and Munch believed that coaches in the NFL are rewarded and incentivized for being liked by there players. Coaches build a following, and owners frequently ask players what they think of coaches. So, when he brought Chet in, Chet knew his job was to piss people off and stay on players when they misbehaved and acted like jagoffs.
Me: Was that the rationale in hiring a coach who had no track record with any players?
Him: Yea, he said that he would never get/want an NFL job again, but took it as kind of a favor to Munch and for the experience.
Me: What does he say about the rest of the organization?
Him: Those coaches and everyone truly believe that that QB kid is the real deal, he just has to stay healthy. The organization is entirely hinged on him, and Chet isnt sure what hes going to do next. He is hoping for a college job. Chet got a little bit upset that he got flack for not having a coaching record. He was there to support Munch. They were roommates at Penn State, where Chet was an All-American. Plus, Chet played in the league for 5 years. He felt that he knew what he was doing.
Me: Thanks for the peek in. Take care of yourself.
My Takeaway: The idea of brining in an outsider to enforce discipline is interesting. We will never know how good or bad of a job Chet did. These NFL locker rooms are some weird places. I thought the insight was awesome, and I hope anyone who reads this appreciates it a bit. Take care.