Mike Mularkey was named permanent head coach on Saturday by the Tennessee Titans after serving as interim head coach for nine games last season. With the hiring of general manager Jon Robinson, it was apparent that the organization was committed to Mularkey all along. Robinson was the only candidate to agree on keeping Mularkey around. So, basically, the interviewing of Teryl Austin, Doug Marrone, and Ray Horton was a big charade.
The Titans ownership ignored the majority of the fanbase on this one. Titans fans mutually agreed that they wanted to see Josh McDaniels as the next head coach. Obviously the organization seen something in Mularkey that we all didn’t.
The Titans offense improved statistically under him after they fired Whisenhunt. Marcus Mariota wasn’t sacked as much under Mularkey, the team played with more emotion, and the third down conversion percentage rose.
“He is definitely a man that deserves the job,” Mariota said. “I look forward to being able to work with him. He is very excited. We are going to focus on what is going on now and finding ways to get better. I can’t wait to get there and work.”
Amy Adams Strunk, Titans controlling owner, says continuity plays a big role in the decision to keep Mularkey. Having consistency for Mariota and such a young team is important as far as growth is concerned. Although, reports say the Titans aren’t planning on keeping Mularkey around “long term” which could very well affect the maturing process of the team.
In 3 of 4 seasons as the Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator, Mularkey’s offense produced a 3,000 yard passer, a 1,000 yard receiver, and a 1,000 yard rusher. Those are three things the Titans lack each season. The last time the Titans seen a consistent 1,000 yard rusher was 2008 draft pick Chris Johnson.
Mularkey has an 18-39 record as a head coach with three teams, including 2-7 as the Titans interim coach. While the hiring wasn’t popular among fans, it’ll be interesting to see what Jon Robinson and Mike Mularkey can do for this franchise together. Commitment to Mularkey is key. The Titans and their fanbase should give him time to progress and build his vision with Robinson. Constant change is bad for a young quarterback.
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