I don't normally do this. But this one was bad. Really bad.
This isn't about how much coverage the small market teams get, this isn't about being upset someone picked my favorite team to under perform our outright implode. There is plenty of evidence from the past year or two that could lead to that conclusion. But why choose to write an article with little to no knowledge of the subject? Exaggeration is fine. It sells, it gets people talking, it inspires rebuttals on fan sites. But there should also be a bottom line of accountability when working as a professional for a national publication.
While many fans of the Tennessee Titans lament the focus or coverage of their team on a national stage, this isn't exactly what they were asking for.
Did Mr. Schein converse with any of his compatriots or cohorts in the industry? Could he have reached out to the numerous Titan beat writers, both local and nationally? Between the multiple sports radio show hosts in the city of Nashville, Jim Wyatt, John Glennon, David Boclair, and ESPN's Paul Kuharsky, I'm sure someone would have returned an email from NFL.com.
Aaaron Hernandez and the Patriots are drama filled. Riley Cooper on the heels of Michael Vick is drama. Chad Ocho-Cinco, Terrell Owens, and Pac Man Jones are drama. The Titans have none of this.
Adam references a tough schedule out of the gate and Kenny Britt's injury history as main tenants of his thesis. While they may be seen as potential obstacles, I have yet to see how they constitute as "drama".
Anyone close to the team in any regard will tell you that this is one of the tightest knit groups they have ever seen at Titans' camp. Their focus is singular and hold each other accountable. They have become a family and brotherhood thanks in part to veteran leadership by free agents and the new coaching staff.
When Locker was injured, the team enjoyed some success, playing with (and for) veteran Matt Hasselbeck.
As much as Adam Schein would like to suggest that the team doesn't follow Jake Locker, and played harder for Matt Hasselbeck last year, it's just not true. At all. You can say what you want about Locker's decision making, or ability to perform in the NFL, but the entire TEAM is behind him 100%, and his leadership is unquestionable.
The E! News-like dribble that made up the main body of Adam Schein's article can only be meant as tabloid headline meant to catch the average NFL fan and grab their attention. Attention towards a team that rarely gets any as far as national coverage is concerned.
I give a lot of slack in the off season due to the lack of material to write on. I'm well aware of how difficult it is to come up with pertinent pieces. Many writers have quotas and deadlines and even my lowly self has spent time staring at a blank computer screen trying to conjure up a topic.
I believe part of the problem is having writers or journalist that cover the NFL as a whole. It's too big now with too many strong rooted fans basis. Sites like our own Music City Miracles have become a hub for those that devour their teams information piece by piece and know everything about their team intimately.
Not all coverage or pieces from the NFL are full of fluff. Jeff Darlington also covers many teams, but actually takes the time to travel and spend some time at each teams camp. He also has his questions about whether or not the Titans will be able to succeed or not, as do many. But his presentation and research are on another level than Schein's. I'm not suggesting that everyone do that, but don't write about what you don't know. It would be hard enough to cover an entire division accurately (Paul Kuharsky), let alone the entire league and actually speak with conviction.
The real rub is that Adam Schein is a professional. He is paid to write by the NFL. I can only assume he's grasping at straws and apparently found himself with a deadline to meet. I am sure one could blow holes in this article that I am writing at 5:00 a.m., in under an hour, including pics, links, tags and editing, before I go to my "real" job. But as a professional, I believe Adam should be held to a higher standard. Nothing he stated is factually incorrect, or even egregious. Just way of base. With the amplification of blogs and other media sites in the sports world, it's time the professionals realize how educated the fan bases have become.
With everyone else writing about Aaron Hernandez, Riley Cooper, and the golden teams of the NFL, why not try and do something different? I get it. "A" for concept, "F" for execution. Unfortunately, this needs to be one he wishes he could have back. time to step up your game Adam.