Thu, 26 May 2022

Jim Wyatt

NASHVILLE - It's NFL schedule week.

We already know the Titans will travel to face the Bills in Week 2, on Monday Night Football.

In a few days, we'll know the rest of the schedule, with dates and times.

What else do you want to know?

Let's find out in this Tuesday's Titans mailbag...

Here's the link to ask questions: CLICK HERE

Joe Warren from Warren, Arkansas

Question: The Titans have our hometown hero now, Treylon Burks. Will we see him start this season?

Jim: Hey Joe. Well, a lot hinges on Treylon, and how quickly he adapts to the NFL, gets up to speed with the playbook, performs, etc. Look at the Titans receiving corps and there's no doubt he has a great opportunity to make an early impact. But it won't be easy, and I've seen a lot of rookie receivers struggle early. I think Treylon has a chance to succeed as a rookie, but we'll see. I'll get my first look at him this weekend at rookie minicamp.

Patrick Rupp from Franklin, Wisconsin

Question: Hello Jim. I believe the Titans conducted a need valuable draft and like what they did. The question I have is the Titans are high on their TE pick? I know rookies take time to develop, but why spend 3M on Swain if you're taking a TE near the middle of your picks? My opinion they should of took that money all be it Swain is a blocker more than a receiver and applied that money into the O-line. Thoughts?? And Thank You from a 40 year plus Oiler/Titan fan from Wisconsin and yes I am one of the few that is Anti Packers.

Jim: Hey Patrick. Good to hear from you. Tight end Chig Okonkwo from Maryland, taken in the fourth round, is who you're referring too. And yes, the team is high on him. I really like the looks of him myself. He reminds me a lot of Jonnu Smith, the way he plays, and his body type. The Titans got a solid tight end in free agency as well in Austin Hooper. I've heard from some folks who weren't fired up with the Swaim signing, I guess because he's not a flashy player. But the coaching staff really likes him, and so does the GM. But I hear ya, the question marks on the o-line haven't gone away, and the team may not be done there yet so it's fair game to wonder aloud.

Brett Heard from Nashville, Tennessee

Question: Hate losing AJ, but I get it. Our defense is what kept us in games and that defense will soon cost a lot of money to keep together. We are a running team and do not need to be paying a WR $25 million a year. He should be paid but his availability due to injuries does not warrant that type of contract in this offense. I have to agree with Tannehill's comments. It's not his job to coach up his replacement. How is he going to get better if he is spending his time coaching the player that could be next in line? I am not sold on Willis (there is a reason all these QB's dropped like they did, and Pickett was a huge reach) but I hope he proves me wrong. He seems like a good kid that probably had the most upside of any of the QB's available, so as a Titans fan, I obviously hope he is successful. I love this draft class. Burks was who I wanted, just did not expect it to happen the way it did! I think Chig was a great selection. Hopefully we go back to using TE's the way we used to. I can't wait to yell Chiiiiigggggg! when he has big plays on Sunday.

Jim: Or, how about singing, "Gettin' Chiggy with it?" I can hear it playing on the loudspeakers now...

Isaac Diffenderfer from Mt. Juliet, Tennessee

Question: Welp, after days of crying, I'm finally able to talk about AJ without tears in my eyes (barely.) First of all, this means the Titans are going to sign a veteran WR....... Right? I mean, we have brains, we aren't SO* stupid. We have to have a plan to sign someone like OBJ, or even trade for Deebo or Terry McLaurin! Because right now, our WR core is a guy coming of a tore ACL, a rookie, and Nick Westbrook Ikhine. I love NWI but he's not enough to carry the team right now. Unless he somehow breaks out this year and becomes a top 10 wideout. I can dream. So, Jim, do you think the Titans are looking into the WR market? If so, who should they get?

*even though we are pretty damn stupid for trading away our #1 offensive weapon whilst Henry was injured. Also, congrats Henry, you are now our entire offense!

Jim: Hey Isaac. I'm not going to rule it out, and there's a guy or two I like available. I suspect the team wants to give the guys currently on the roster a chance to compete, and then see how things are going. But like I said, some guys are out there, and others will be at some point as well.

Tommy Henley from Cookeville, Tennessee

Question: Hey Jim. Hope all is well an greatly appreciated wat you do for us fans, but everyone has to realize bout AJ the NFL is a business and wish him well, an Tannehill tell em keep his head up an don't listen to critics I got faith in him. I been watching game highlights of our new draft picks an I'm very impressed Treylon, Phillips, Jackson, all of them will be coached well I think Treylon will be a beast, an Phillips man can he run routes good foot work, but can't wait for oncoming season tell our guys an coaches this Titan 4LIFE is has complete faith in them an welcome to Titans Nation family thanks again Jim. GO TITANS BABY!!!!!

Jim: Appreciate it, Tommy.

Carol Thomas from Chattanooga, Tennessee

Question: Ok I got over the shock of losing AJ. I wish him well and hope it is not a move he will regret. I think of Tom Brady when it comes to wanting to win when he said if he couldn't live off $10 million a year then something was wrong. Of course, he has other sources of income so that was not a real representation of his wealth. LOL

My question this week has to do with the latest drama over a statement made by Ryan Tannehill about mentoring Malik Willis. Why does it seem like there is a campaign to push Tannehill to the side and every week a new controversy pops up??

Kobe Bryant grew up watching the G.O.A.T of the NBA, Michael Jordan. But when Kobe hit that hardwood floor in games against Jordan, there was no mentoring by Jordan. Kobe was treated just like the other competitors Jordan faced because above all else Jordan wanted to win regardless of Kobe's inexperience in the NBA those first years. Now it is a fact Kobe became a great player but it was done not because of any mentoring by Jordan but it was due to what he learned on his own and with the help of the people whose job it was to coach and mentor him.

I hope that when the time comes for Willis to takeover the QB spot, he will have his own experiences as well as what he learns from watching Ryan Tannehill's performance but it is not Ryan Tannehill's job to coach him. Willis has the best coach in the NFL, Mike Vrabel. No other coach in the NFL could have taken more than 91 players off the practice squad and from the streets to get to not just the Division win but also the number one seed in the AFL when the team had been written off after Derrick's injury. Willis will get his turn and we can only hope that like Kobe he will know what to do with it. Meanwhile, Ryan Tannehill is our QB. It is past time to get over the loss to the Bengals and get ready for the 2022 season because from the looks of our schedule there are no easy games. TITANUP!!

Jim: Hi Carol. I appreciate your email. Yes, I'm tired of hearing all the hot takes on Ryan Tannehill's comments on mentorship. I think it got way too much play during a slow news week. The reality is I think Ryan will help Malik, and be a good teammate. It's a shame he's been ripped by so many over what I think was simply a poor choice of words, or interpretation of his words. Not sure your Kobe/Jordan comparison fits, though, because those guys were competitors, not teammates. I do think Ryan needs to - and will - be a good teammate to Malik because it will make the team better. And that's the most important thing.

Kevin Washington from Baltimore, Maryland

Question: I think there's been too much made out of Ryan Tannehill and his remarks about Malik Willis? Agree.

Jim: I just wonder what folks would have said if Ryan responded by saying: "My No.1 job is to mentor Malik Willis and I'm going to spend all my time doing that."

Harry Prentiss from Sunbury, Pennsylvania

Question: After the draft the most pressing question I have is how can people wonder where the Titans improved? Drafting Treylon Burks was a winner with me both with AJ or without. Burks is physical like Brown and is a big play guy who should pair well with Woods who is better than Julio Jones. Two improvements although Brown will be missed and he was one of my favorite Titan players let's not forget he missed 6 games the last 2 years. I liked the pick of McCreary who played high level competition in the SEC and really loved the pick of Haskins as a backup for the King. He's got Henry attributes in that he's a strong and quick power back and he never fumbles. The big lineman from Ohio State is a nice pick as well. So I feel we have potentially with the signing of Hooper as well drastically improved this offense. Titan Up everybody and believe in JRob and Vrabes.

Jim: Hey Harry. Thanks for chiming in. I like the picks, too, but these guys are going to have to settle in and step up. A.J.'s production won't be easy to match. I do think Woods will be more productive than Julio.

Josh Cater from Chattanooga, Tennessee

Question: Jim, Wow! The hate train has been has been rolling fast and furious! I, like others, hate to see AJ go, but unfortunately for the fans, the NFL is a business. Teams and players alike have to make business decisions. I do see a silver lining that we will be able to resign Jeff, David and Nate hopefully next year because we are getting younger at so many positions.

My comment is about Ryan. When you listen to the interview his words about Malik don't sound vengeful or harsh, but just matter of fact about competition.. I think if he could redo the interview now, he would cut out the mentor comment. I don't mind the sentiment, but it should go unsaid. I was more disappointed that it revealed an attitude that was not team first - Titans first. That's what I love about the guys JRob and Vrabes pick to play for them. They are tough and team focused!

Post draft I am as excited about this team as I've ever been! The season can't get here fast enough! Titan up!

Jim: This is fair, Josh. Appreciate you chiming in.

Walt Slaughter from Raleigh, North Carolina

Question: Why, Jim ............... would an overpaid QB like Tannehill feel obliged to volunteer that his job is not to mentor rookie Malik Willis? Except maybe that Ryan knows he's not mentor material? No. 17 has put up some nice numbers but at best he is a serviceable signal caller. Neither were the Titans obliged to advise him in advance of their draft choices as he seems to think. I don't get him.

Jim: We've tackled the mentoring comment in here plenty, and everyone as a right to his/her opinion. I do agree it didn't sound great. ... Ryan never expected anyone to alert him in advance of the draft choices. All he did was answer a question on if he'd been told/informed. Frankly, it was a bad question (and I don't even remember who asked it). Malik was the 86th pick of the draft. No one needs a heads up about picking a guy 86th.

Adam Finlan from Spring Hill, Tennessee

Question: Hey Jim is Adam I am a Down syndrome about this Tennessee Titans world champion and go to super bowl at Arizona with Malik Willis just like a Tom Brady record.

Jim: Hope you're doing great, Adam!

John Mellos from Montreal, Quebec

Question: Hello Jim! Big fan of your writing and a long time fan of the titans. First of all, that has to be one of the craziest drafts I can remember! Although I was blindsided by the AJ Brown trade I think JRob did a great job of making the very best out of that situation and I am left feeling optimistic and fairly excited for the upcoming season. But I am writing to you this week in a desperate attempt to pump the brakes on the Tannehill hate train that seems to be leaving the station at this very moment. I understand that many fans were left with a sour taste in their mouth after that loss to the bengals, believe me, so was I. But I think we need to keep in mind how money Tannehill has been for us since he took over at QB and what he managed to accomplish with one of the most injured teams in nfl history last season. I understand the temptation to jump ship especially with a flashy new rookie arriving but I think we need to show Tannehill the respect he has earned and accept that he is our best hope to bring a Super Bowl to the Titans in the Derrick Henry Era.

Cheers and Titan up!

Question: Thanks for taking the time, John.

Randy Porter from Hendersonville, Tennessee

Question: Hi Jim ! After watching recent comments by Ryan Tannehill, I actually gained new respect for him. His comments were a reminder on the level of pressure athletes are under, not only from the media and fans, but from themselves. Everyone has experienced letting down friends, family, or a few coworkers, but I can't imagine feeling like I let "everyone" down, including myself. I'm glad Ryan did spend time with a sports therapists, as many athletes do. In fact, many franchises keep them on staff. Ryan sat his ego aside, was honest and forthright and I respect that. Many would argue that "it comes with the job", or "he's paid well to handle the pressure". Well, while that may be valid and yes he's one of the toughest QB's I've seen, but he's still human. As for Willis, I agree with Ryan. His job is not to prepare Malik, but to prepare himself first. Ryan has beat himself up over the last game and so has everyone else. A little too much. But now he knows he has to get himself ready for a new season and if fans are smart, they will support him, instead of continuing to berate him, which will not win games. Yes, Ryan has made mistakes like every other player has, but he is our starting QB who took a pieced-together team on his shoulders, and took them to the playoffs more than once. Have we forgotten that so soon? And, he's done it at times with little help or support. Now, here's what Ryan hasn't done. He hasn't pointed a single finger at others who contributed to our last loss. He never blamed coaching decisions, the lack of protection, or the receivers. He put all blame on himself and we blamed him too, which is just not fair. This team has become a great team with Tannehill at the helm and if we want another winning season, we better all remember that and support our leader. After all, he's been one of the few things we could count on, game after game, and I respect and appreciate that. So, like losing A.J., enough. Let's let it go and Titan Up !

Jim: Always good to hear from you Randy!

Joe Pinzur from Hartsville, Tennessee

Question: Jim. I have a quick response to all of the Titans fans who were so upset by the AJ Brown trade:

"It's called a salary cap; if you don't like it, go cheer for the NY Yankees!" The End

Jim: We don't need any more Yankees fans out there, Joe...

Dave Stalder from Albuquerque, New Mexico

Question: Hey, Jim. Not sure what to think. Some people are happy. Most are mad. This is my team. I have trust in King Henry, but...

Jim: This sounds like a country song...

Jason Petty from Lebanon, Tennessee

Question: Jim, you should be awarded a Metal of Valor for dealing with US fans that use you to vent our anger and frustrations. YES I flew as fast as my internet would get me to your mailbag when I heard the news AJ Brown was traded. I like many other fans was dumbfounded when the news drop kicked me straight in my face. Not to mention I'm still completely heart broken (and unable to get over) Freddie Freeman leaving my/ HIS Braves for the HATED Dodgers. 2 highly beloved players leaving my teams had dealt a crushing blow to my hopes for MAGICAL endings to Amazing seasons for my MLB & NFL teams. AJ was the first WR we drafted , developed, and turned into 1 of the best in the game. After many busts or guys that did NOT live up to the hype. For all the Kenny Britts, Doreal Green-Beckhams, Kendal Wright, we've drafted with high hopes AJ actually panned out. Not to mention getting 2 of the games absolute BEST receivers at or near the end of their careers (Moss/Jones). Now that more details have come out, & despite what the media claims I understand why he was traded. With all that said, my question is this. How do the Titans of 2022 stack up with the Division? The other teams all seemed to get what the National media saw as holes, yet everyone thinks the Titans may have filled some holes on defense, but they've just put the entire offensive load completely on King Henry's back. Thanks again Jim for listening, and for putting up with us. Have a great week

Jim: All good, Jason! Hey, it's hard for me to give predictions/evaluate these Titans without seeing them on the field. No doubt the team has a lot of questions still. I like some of the acquisitions, but the team obviously still has some questions marks on the offensive line, and at receiver. I think the defense is going to be solid. Meanwhile, the Colts have gotten better. I think the AFC South is going to be competitive, and the Titans will have a great chance to win it. But obviously the goal is much bigger after winning it the past two years.

Have a great week everyone!

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