The Titans have made a decision that they should have made a year ago. Mike Munchak, a first class player and even better person, was simply in over his head as an NFL head coach. He was not cut out to be a head coach in this ever changing league. There is no shame in that, however as not many people are. These past three years have shown us the dark side of organizational nepotism can have damaging effects. As the University of Alabama can tell you (post Bear Bryant), hiring one of the legend's disciples is a hit (Gene Stallings) or miss (everyone else) affair. It's time to cut ties from the Oilers history and go elsewhere for a coach. Here's this week's candidate.
Candidate: Jay Gruden Bengals Offensive Coordinator
- Interesting resume - He has one. Gruden has risen up the coaching ranks at a rapid pace from the Arena League to ultimately the NFL. He also has ties to the Nashville area as he began his journey there. The resume suggests that he loves to stick close to his Florida home as he's coached in hometown Tampa and nearby Orlando. Nashville provides an excellent chance for him to stay closer to home than Cincy ever will.
- Coaching - Gruden can do it. Granted, the majority has been in the lower levels of pro football but it is coaching nonetheless but he did serve under his brother and Jim Haslett (two relatively successful coaches) before becoming a head coach himself. He also has experience as a GM. What I really like about him is he has developed Andy Dalton into a legitimate pro passer (despite Dalton's derp moments and his skill set limitations). It helps to have a supremely talented wideout in AJ Green of course but Dalton's rapid development bodes well for young Locker or the next QB if they go that route should Gruden get hired here. Gruden has also proven that he just isn't Jon's little brother and has struck out on his own merit.
- Will he leave? - This is a good question after he turned down multiple interviews from teams. I'm not sure if he wants to leave the Bengals after 3 years on the job with working with Dalton and co. Maybe if he feels like he's been stagnated under Marvin Lewis but I doubt that as he has full control over the offense.
Yes. I would hire him. He has experience in all levels of football and has had success in all of them. He also has experience in coaching for organizations that are in transition (although Bengals owner Mike Brown has loosened the reins a bit under Marvin Lewis). Gruden's development of Andy Dalton into a respectable NFL quality starter is another plus for him. It bodes well for whoever the next Titans QB is, whether it be Jake Locker or someone else that isn't currently on the roster.
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