Titans' ownership has been a very hot topic for about the past month throughout the community. It is something that I have had my eye on nonstop since the Miami game, and personally, I feel that I have probably been one of the more vocal people about the topic. While I have been very critical of the group, even recently suggesting that a sale is coming soon, it is past time to give credit where it is due. Titans ownership has stepped it up in a number of ways recently, and maybe, just maybe, the team's darkest hour may be coming to a close, thanks to them.
The first power move made by ownership was an absolute bombshell with the firing of Ken Whisenhunt. Clearly, it was the right thing to do, but there were some other messages behind the move that were very encouraging. For one, it showed the commitment to the team. As much as people said that the ownership group "doesn't care, and is just collecting their checks," this was a move that showed that the group will not put up with an unacceptable level of play. It would have been very easy for Titans' ownership to sit back and preach patience, when in reality the group simply did not want to pay Ken Whisenhunt millions of dollars not to coach the team. Not only did the move show a commitment to a better product on the field, it also showed some long term commitment to the team, which I and others were starting to highly doubt. The owners would not eat the dollars like that, and make a move like that if they were not committed to the franchise long term.
The ownership group has also become increasingly visible over the past few weeks. Several people have mentioned how Amy Adams Strunk and company have been at every game. Steve Underwood, who essentially speaks for ownership had an interview on a local radio station, 104.5 The Zone on Friday, and obviously spoke at Mike Mularkey's introductory press conference. Kenneth Adams also has been continually popping up. He seems to have a passion for the team, but is simply too young to be a controlling owner. Considering the fact that he is probably the most visible of the group, and basically always with Amy Adams Strunk whenever you see her, it would not be far fetched to assume that he is her right hand man, and has a very strong voice in the building. Finally, you can see Amy Adams Strunk and Kenneth Adams in the locker room celebrating with the players in this video. You can see that they clearly care about the team, and want to be a part of what's going on. The increased visibility has certainly provided the fanbase with much more clarity, which is extremely encouraging.
It is also very refreshing to see the owners place so much importance on Marcus Mariota. It is pretty clear at this point that he is the face of the franchise, and the future success of this team is largely dependent on him. It's encouraging to see that Titans ownership feels the same way. One of the main reasons that Ken Whisenhunt was fired was because of his lack of protection for Mariota. Immediately following the move, Amy Adams Strunk talked with interim Head Coach Mike Mularkey about the importance of keeping him upright. Steve Underwood also implied that the next Head Coach will be an offensive mind that can help take Mariota to the next level. It is clear that ownership sees some light at the end of the tunnel thanks to Mariota, and they have a clear plan to build around him. You can tell from the video above how much they love him, and how highly they think of him. By doing everything they can for Mariota, the future is starting to look bright.
Are all of the questions about Titans ownership answered now? Of course not. There is still a president search, possible General Manager search, and Head Coach searching coming in the very near future. However, it is safe to say that Titans ownership is starting to show some very encouraging signs. Maybe some of the recent uncertainty was just a rough part of a transitional period from Tommy Smith and Susie Adams, who failed at their job. As someone who was *thisclose* to essentially giving up on the franchise completely, this has been a breath of fresh air. Let's hope it continues, and the Adams' give this community something to be proud of. They are well underway.