No. The Tennessee Titans are not the best of the best.
They're not even the best of the worst.
But that is what a coach is supposed to get out of his players. There's a saying I can't quite remember but a good coach is supposed to get the best out of the best and work with the rest. This staff is doing neither.
Though Mike Munchak was not fired for it, he was constantly criticized by the fans over the team play on Sundays. He didn't call the plays, but he did hire the assistants and even took a direct hand with the offensive line throughout the year. He was constantly under critique, however, for fielding an undisciplined team that continued to play poorly on an individual level and had a knack for being unable to execute properly.
It doesn't look like much has changed.
Although I do believe Munchak should have been given one more year with Loggains and Locker to sink or swim, this isn't about that. This is about head coach Ken Whisenhunt not doing any better on the same issues that fans had with Munchak.
The Titans are the third worst in the league in penalty yards at 524 through 7 games. That's beyond ridiculous. Mike Munchaks undisciplined 2013 team ended up in the middle of the pack at 13th.
The defense was known to be a work in progress while switching to a 3-4 scheme. If you have the players to run your scheme, but it takes time to learn it, then I'll buy what you are selling. I was told it would take 4 games and then they would be ahead of the rest of the league. But 7 games into the season and you give up a game winning drive to a 3rd string quarterback on a 1 win team and I'm starting to feel the fool. This is just a couple weeks after allowing the greatest come from behind road win in NFL history, which was done by running the ball more than passing it.
So here's the conspiracy theory. Could Locker have gone this week? Is Whisenhunt mad that Locker went off script with his runs in the Browns game? Could it be that Whisenhunt really thinks Charlie Whitehurst will run his scheme and system to a T and therefor give the team a better chance at winning?
Either way, there's a flaw in the play calling and the flaw changes from week to week. Without breaking each game down drive for drive, the overall take away for me is that Whisenhunt is going grab bag on the offensive play calling. All plays work in theory, but the context in which they are called is what baffles me.
There's also a fascination with personnel groupings. For some reason Dexter McCluster can't co exist with Kendall Wright. And for some reason Leon Washington is playing on offense. And worse of all if something seems to be working, then that has become a good time to do something totally the opposite. Could it be that Whisenhunt is just over thinking everything?
On the other hand, the plays are sometimes there, but not executed by the players. Either Justin Hunter drops another deep pass with the ball bouncing off both hands, or a lineman gets blown up by a defensive tackle on a run play, or a safety takes a bad angle, or your quarterback overthrows a wide open tight end, or....you get the point.
Whether it's on offense or defense, if you don't have the players to run your system yet, and you keep implementing said system anyway, then that's bad coaching. It's bullheaded and stubborn. There's no sense in letting guys "get the reps" of your system if they aren't going to be around when you go get players that do fit it. You need to change the X's and O's to work with what you have.
Maybe it's just poor players. Let's say it's not the systems or game plan. Maybe the plays are there and the players are just not making them. Maybe you really do have a team full of underachievers that really aren't that good. If that's the case, then the last coaching staff is looking all the better for getting more out of this team than the current one.
Either way, this coaching staff has been a complete failure to date. I for one am usually faulted for being overly patient, but in this case my patience has worn thin.