Paul K can be as critical as anyone you'll read, but I thought this tweet from him late yesterday was exactly what we all needed to hear. You probably noticed I wasn't around to check the site much at all yesterday, so I'm not specifically commenting on the reaction of MCM luminaries, but the reaction on the radio and around town was pretty knee-jerk. It was like when your team takes the non-sexy pick in the draft: all we can do is look at the evidence that's out there and try to judge the move objectively. Also, the criticism I heard a lot was that the Titans didn't talk to enough guys, but if you've been paying attention (which lots of people haven't, apparently), you'd know that Bill Calahan, Bob Bratkowski, Mike Tice, and probably/possibly Tom Clements and Jim Fassel were all names that came out in the search despite how well Thorchak has done keeping a tight lid on who all he's talked with or evaluated. Is it a sexy hire? Definitely not, but is name recognition really something you want at the top of the list when you're hiring a coordinator?
Chiefs coach Todd Haley, one of the most respected offensive minds in the league right now, wanted Palmer to join his staff earlier in the month. Granted it was as the QB coach, but that was largely because Haley is still controlling that offense (he promoted Bill Muir from within, but most people around the team say Haley is scheming and calling the plays again).
John Glennon relieved a lot of concern among fans who are willing to actually read-up on Palmer by explaining why the veteran coach was in the UFL last year: Palmer was offered an extension as the Giants' QB coach while he had one year left on his contract, but he wanted a clause stating that he could interview for any NFL offensive coordinator spot if a team wanted him. The Giants had already denied other teams the chance to talk to him about OC positions. The Giants wouldn't agree to that clause, so Palmer retired and went to the UFL the same day. If he still had a year left on his contract (which it sounds like he did) the Giants could deny him the right to work for any other NFL team since they still owned his rights for 2010. Worked out pretty well for him, no?
Palmer was the offensive coordinator for the Jags when they topped the league in offensive DVOA back in 1997. More recently, he was the QB coach for the Giants from 2007-09, when the Giants were 22nd, 5th and 10th in passing efficiency while he was there.
Michael Fabiano, a fantasy football analyst for NLF.com, says that the Palmer hire should be good news for CJ2K. Fred Taylor ripped of 1,644 under Palmer, and numerous pedestrian backs have had career years while running for the Titans' new coordinator.
TitanInsider (paywall) reports that both Gray and Palmer will have heavy input on filling the vacant spots on the staff, and Clancy Pendergrast and Tracy rocker remain in the mix for the defensive line coach spot vacated by Jim Washburn.
For some idiotic reason David Climer thinks it will take some time for Palmer to adjust to the move from the UFL's funky rules to the NFL, despite the fact that Palmer has 19 years as a coach in the NFL, versus a single 8 game season in the UFL. That is stunning logic.
Looking back on it, is it really that odd that Munchak keeps making hires with connections to the Oilers? All coaches usually hire guys they have some experience with in the past (easily 75% of the time that's the case), and the Oilers/Titans are the only franchise he's ever been a part of. It's a fallacy to act like this is Bud's call, it's just Thorchak doing what most coaches already do.
ESPN tracked down this video of Jason Babin's appearance on a TV show called Gator 911 from last off-season, in which Babin zip-lines over a pond full of live gators. The best part is his response to questions about his trill-seeking:
"I think the Titans realize if I kill myself they don't have to pay me. It makes me who I am on Sunday."
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