Fisher: Titans stay united, no lineup overhaul needed

Monday, October 5, 2009 at 7:47pm

Tennessee Titans coach Jeff Fisher said Monday that frustrations for an 0-4 team are natural, but he believes the team is still together and not fracturing for a squad that opened the season with such high expectations.

In the wake of Sunday’s 37-17 throttling by the Jacksonville Jaguars, the Titans now face even tougher challenges the next two weeks, hosting the Indianapolis Colts then visiting the New England Patriots.

“Based on my experience as a head coach in the National Football League, I’ve been around a lot of teams, and I think I can judge teams,” Fisher said. “This is a quality team, a team with a good locker room, and I think it’s a good team talent-wise. There’s not anybody pointing fingers.

“Yes, there’s going to be the post-game frustration that you have, especially when you have a team with such high expectations. But when you come back to work Monday, this team understands where they are, and together they understand it.”

After Sunday’s loss, the mood was one of disappointment and a subdued feel, rather than some of the straight anger that had permeated the locker room after the first three losses.

“We’ve got to find a way to win one game and get that feeling back in our locker room,” center Kevin Mawae said after Sunday’s game. “It’s frustrating. It’s disappointing to say the least. How, it doesn’t matter how we get it. We’ve just got to go back to work and get it as quickly as possible.”

That is a tall order with a red-hot Peyton Manning coming to town with four consecutive 300-yard passing games to his credit, with the Titans having given up 300 or more through the air in three of their losses this season.

The status of both starting cornerbacks will be uncertain as well. Cortland Finnegan missed Sunday’s game with a hamstring injury, and Nick Harper exited in the second half with sore ribs. X-rays were negative, but Harper will be “day-to-day,” says Fisher.

Other than those changes potentially dictated by injuries, Fisher said there will not be any other wholesale moves or reshuffling of the lineup.

“By and large the players that are playing right now, with the exception of the guys that need to heal up, are the players that we’re going to go with. I don’t see any drastic, dramatic changes, no,” Fisher said.

He reiterated his belief in quarterback Kerry Collins, who has played well at times, but has been plagued with six interceptions in four games thus far.

Fisher said he will resist the urge to switch to backup Vince Young. Asked why, Fisher pointed to Collins’ play in directing the offense a year ago.

“One in particular is that we won 13 games with him last year. We hadn’t won a game with Vince at that point,” Fisher said. “Kerry’s not the problem. Kerry is making plays, and putting the ball where it needs to be put. I’m not pleased with the interceptions, but other than that, going back over the last few weeks, Kerry has made some great throws and made some plays. We just need to play better around him.”

The coach also indicated that he has communicated with owner Bud Adams recently and that while the owner is disappointed, he understands the situation the team is in.

"He feels no different than we do," Fisher said of Adams. "We all had high expectations, and we're disappointed."

 

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23 Comments on this post:

By: blktenn on 10/6/09 at 5:55

Can you say 0-5 after peyton manning goes for 500 yards ?
AND kerry collins goes 6 for 25 with 4 picks. 85 yards

Titans 8
Colts 45

By: blktenn on 10/6/09 at 6:25

ALL Hail The Great Kerry Collins Week 4 Quarterback rankins 17th and falling !!

By: frank brown on 10/6/09 at 6:53

I agree with Jeff Fisher. There is no need to make line-up changes. They do not have the talent either on the field or on the bench to make a difference. Next year should be equally as bad. These has beens will be gone and young inexperienced players will be required to perform.

By the way, I also laud Jeff Fisher for not exposing Vince Young to this mayhem. As one of the best sports writers in the state explains, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning cannot help this crew.

By: TitansFan035 on 10/6/09 at 7:28

Collins numbers for sunday are as follow: 6-23 for 76yds, 3.5 sacks, 1 fumble, and 3 interceptions.. If i was Vince i called in sick!!!

By: wolfy on 10/6/09 at 7:46

Fisher was vintage yesterday in his presser. Stay the course basically is what his message was. Even the most ardent Titans fan is going to have to face reality after the next two weeks. I have no reason to believe that we'll get a victory. I have to disagree with others though. This team has talent but the signal caller is playing like his better days are behind him. More suprising to me is Bulluck and Griffin comstantly playing out of position. Two pro-bowlers playing lost .That baffles me..

By: TITAN1 on 10/6/09 at 8:18

I still wish we were starting VY for the rest of the season just to see if he is indeed our future. If at the end of the season he has played like the high pick is suppose to play then we have our QB, if not then cut or trade him before next season and get one in the draft or maybe even Brady Quinn. Brady is a victim of playing for a lousy team/organization with two very good quarterbacks. JMO.

By: tnsmile on 10/6/09 at 8:37

Not really a Vince supporter... but why not play him now? Give him more experience since this season is totally shot and build for next season. Fisher keeps saying Young is our quarterback of the future. If that is so... let him get some playing time to toughen up more and connection with the players in real situations on the field instead of waiting. I like Kerry, I do... but he was made starter to give us the best chance for the playoffs etc... we're not going to achieve that this season. I understand our issue is not necessarily a QB problem but a little of everything. Offensive line is not protecting the QB and blocking for the run. Passes are being dropped. Defensive secondary is weak. These are areas that shouldn't have changed from last season since there was no big roster changes for these positions. I would like to see the Titans mix things up and try some unexpected stuff... whats there to lose?

By: wayneCaluger on 10/6/09 at 11:32

What a concept, change the quarterback and that will cure all the Titanic’s problems, since that is the root of all problems. Let’s see how that logic works.

Steeler Game: With VY he could have made both field goals negating the need of overtime while covering Hines Ward and the rest of the Steeler concurrently pressuring Big Ben so he wouldn’t have all day to choose which wide open receiver he wanted to throw to. (Steelers 1-3 and Super Bowl Champs)

Texans: VY would have caught and advanced every punt and kick off without mishandling or fumbling a single one—keep in mind Fisher said anyone could field punts and kickoffs. He didn’t say advancing them and field position was important. With his defensive prowess VY would have either or both put pressure on Matt Schaub or his receivers keeping Schaub well under 300 yards in passing and 34 points while scoring 31 points. (Texans 2-2)

Jets: Pretty much the same as the prior two games other that with rookie quarterback Mark Sanchez based on what I’m hearing VY could have kept him under 300 yards as well and 24 points while scoring more than 17 since he would have been the non exist run game—Houston excepted. (Jets 3-1)

Jaguars: About the only good thing about this game was it was blacked out in Jacksonville since the Jags are so bad nobody shows up, but VY was there. Based on the Jacksonville Press “Garrard shredded Tennessee's injury depleted secondary, often picking on rookie cornerback Jason McCourty, and Jacksonville's defense forced four punts and three turnovers in Tennessee's first eight possessions. The result was a 30-3 lead in the third quarter.

However, with VY in the game he would have solved all the problems starting with keeping Garrard well under 323 yards in passing offense and under 38 points. On the offensive side VY would have ran the ball without fumbling and all that time the offensive line would have provided him would have had all day to find his wide open receivers racking up more than 17 points. (Jaguars 2-2).

That’s what I’m hearing, the only problem the Titanic’s has is its quarterback who took them to a 13-3 record last year. By himself VY will turn last year’s great defensive secondary with 3 Pro-Bowlers that returned everyone except Defensive Coordinator Jim Schwartz (replaced by rookie Chuck Cecil) into a force to be reckon with while putting the pressure himself on Payton (next week) and Brady (the week after).

Now I must not have seen the VY everyone is screaming for during pre-season games. I must have been watching an old New York Titans AFL pre-season game that had a 4 year rookie by the name of Vince Young playing for them.

In my opinion if you want a head you should be screaming for is Fisher or at least Cecil head, not Collins.

Last night I watched a 40 year old quarterback take the Packers apart. But of course he had help from his defense with at least 6 sacks, a couple of takeaways and an offensive line that gave the old guy time to light up his receivers.

But, you guys say this VY fellow can do it all without a defense, offensive line, running backs and receivers that can get open and catch the ball. I’m game, so bring this superman on so I can see what you guys see.

By: TITAN1 on 10/6/09 at 1:05

Wayne, you don't have to write a book every time you post. There are those of us who want to see what VY can do the rest of the year. He is due a ton of money next season. A little common sense is all it takes. Nobody said the season would turn around with VY in the game.

By: frank brown on 10/6/09 at 2:14

Wayne

I apreciated your treatise and understand it fully. I take such great pleasure with this comment board, I have come to the conclusion that the reason we have not had more civil insurrections in this country is because so many of the people who represent the underclass are not intelligent enough to know just how deficient they are in the brain category. They just float through life trying to get the the people in charge of almost everything to listen to to their ramblings.

This group of people who think Vince Young or that matter Peyton Manning could straighten out this mess with the Titans is either pathetic or comical depending on you sense of value.

By: TITAN1 on 10/6/09 at 2:17

frank, please read my previous post.

By: frank brown on 10/6/09 at 2:18

Titan1

You are a good man. I do not mean to include you in the category I mentioned. I even understand your logic. However look at Vince Young through either Bud Adams eyes or the Titans coaching staff. Obviously they have a plan in mind for Vince Young, They either are withholding him so that his value does not depreciate further or they are withholding him for the reason I mention. That being he is just not ready for being the leader of a team with more holes than a sieve.

By: jwk6179 on 10/6/09 at 2:55

The Titans need to go 2-14 this year just to PROVE to everyone in Nashville how many "True Blue, Life-Long, Die-Hard Titan Fans" there really are in Middle Tennessee. I have a sneaking supension that if the Titans finish amoung the worst in the NFL, a whole lot of these so-called Die-Hard Titan Fans will be NO WHERE TO FOUND! I suspect that the Titans bandwagon will be pretty close to empty. It's going be mighty lonely for Titan1.

By: gdiafante on 10/6/09 at 3:34

"They just float through life trying to get the the people in charge of almost everything to listen to to their ramblings."

Is that why you post here? Interesting.

I can't believe that some are asking why start VY...um...despite the fact that he stinks, he quit on the team. No-brainer...he shouldn't start another game for the Titans.

By: TITAN1 on 10/6/09 at 5:30

jw, there are 58,000 season ticket holders. My family owns four. I can only speak for us. We will NEVER let them go due to down seasons. I would be willing to bet that thousands of others feel the same. You see jw, it is about supporting the home town team regardless of the record. Sure, there will be no shows as there is in all stadiums. Pulling for the home town team is not jumping on a band wagon. But hey, you keep on dreaming and hoping that the NFL will fail here, and you can join that little bandwagon of "no" people that started rolling it over a decade ago. Cheers!

By: TITAN1 on 10/6/09 at 5:32

gd, you surprise me. I thought you knew football better than that.

By: wayneCaluger on 10/6/09 at 6:11

TITAN1 and Frank, sorry about the book approach, but my hope was it may be a football 101 for the clueless. Having played football the worse thing for a team is changes that come across to the veterans that you have given up on them. I know, been there and witnessed a team loose games the four year starters could have won against bottom feeder teams all for a better next year. Not like changing a pitcher in baseball, changing a quarterback for the sake of change requires a whole new learning curve for the line, receivers and running backs.

We all should recall the last game VY started and how it went during preseason. As the course is now set we are on track to get a high first round draft pick as our brightest light at the end of the dark tunnel. Perhaps it we will pick Teabow, but with half of our defensive starters contract up next year plus a few offensive starters it will a task.

Enjoyed the chance to weigh in and will continue to read the postings, but most likely not post.

By: TITAN1 on 10/6/09 at 6:36

VY played very well against the Packers in preseason. Yes, it was preseason but, he did things that he had not been doing, reading the field better, stepping up in the pocket, and making better decisions. I don't believe for a second that the Titans have already decided to get rid of him before next season without seeing what he can do this season. Kerry is not the future, we need to find out if VY has progressed to where he needs to be, if not then we move on.

By: frank brown on 10/6/09 at 9:01

GDIAFANTE

You know full well why I post here! I can't help but wonder if you got a raise this year? If you are in the market for an automobile I understand that KIA will sell anybody with $199 a car.

By: frank brown on 10/6/09 at 9:05

TITAN1

The coaching staff may not need to see what he can do in a game. They may watch him practice.

I understand that Fisher said on Tuesday when asked the question about Vince Young that he said something to the effect that there are things that go on within our organization that the fans and public are not aware of.

By: jps13pat on 10/6/09 at 10:44

Wolfy - Bulluck and Griffin are playing lost because they're not used to playing on a defense with no pass rush. They're both used to jumping routes and being aggressive. They can't do that if our D-Line can't get to the quarterback.

Wayne - I'm in the same boat with a lot of other people here in that I think we should start Vince Young. Not because he's going to turn the season around (though that would not be unprecedented - reference his rookie season), but because we need to find out if he can cut it. This team has a lot of holes to fill this next offseason. It would be nice if QB wasn't one of them. (But for the record, I don't think we should start him until AFTER we play the Colts and Patriots). As far as sending the message that you're giving up on the veterans... screw them. Looks to me like they've given up on us already. If they wanted to play for this season, they should have played a lot better on the front end. Anyways, I'm with you on taking a good hard look at the coaching staff. Jeff seems to be struggling to keep this team unified, and Cecil is awful. Cecil's got to go.

Frank - I'm sure the Titans do have a plan in mind for VY. That's not to say I like it!

jwk - The Titans have had some pretty terrible years in Tennessee. Last I checked, we still sold out every game within 5 minutes of tickets going on sale. I say that to say, quit being a hater.

gdi - Vince never gave up on the team. He said some dumb, immature things and he went a little crazy last year, but that shouldn't be misunderstood for quitting on the team as you are suggesting. To my knowledge, nobody has ever said that VY is a bad teammate.

By: TITAN1 on 10/7/09 at 5:11

jps, I do agree with your last two paragraphs. jw is a Packers fan and can't stand the support the Titans get. gd, doesn't like anyone, just always bitter.

By: TitansFan035 on 10/8/09 at 7:26

Fire Fisher!!