The Titans’ 2014 season got off to a promising start, with the team scoring an impressive Week 1 win over the Chiefs in Kansas City. From that point on though, Tennessee lost 14 of its remaining 15 contests, with a two-point home victory over Jacksonville the only thing standing in the way of a 15-game losing streak.
Coming off a disastrous first year for new head coach Ken Whisenhunt and armed with the second overall pick in this spring’s draft, general manager Ruston Webster spoke to Jim Wyatt of the Tennessean about the coming offseason, and the club’s plan to turn things around. Here are a few of Webster’s notable comments:
On the quarterback position:
“We have to get our quarterback situation squared away — that is probably the most important thing, to have the same guy out there for 16 games. We haven’t had that in quite awhile. If this team is going to progress and progress quickly, that is going to be the major deal.
“We definitely like Zach [Mettenberger], and he is a good fit for the system. He has a lot of talent and he has worked very hard. And he is smart. We have to go through and do our due diligence on all our options and make sure that we make the best decisions for the Titans long-term. Obviously there will be options in the draft, and there may be options in free agency.”
On other positions that need to be upgraded:
“We have to get better in every area. I thought there were positions, and I put this on me, where our depth wasn’t where it needed to be, at receiver and at corner. We have to add a lot of depth. … We need to bring in more 3-4 outside linebackers and get better there. When you are a 4-3 team you keep more defensive linemen, and a 3-4 team needs more linebackers and we need to build our linebacker core.”
On the Titans’ lack of impact free agent signings:
“I am the GM, and I take all the responsibility for that. I do beat myself over it. It is something I think about a lot, and I go through in my mind countless times of, ‘What happened here? What could I have done better there?’ … Free agency is an area where we need to continue to improve.”
On CEO Tommy Smith saying the team will be active in free agency:
“If you say ‘spend wisely’ people say you aren’t going to spend. What you have to do is be smart about what you do and fill needs. Free agency through the years hasn’t necessarily been something that will change a franchise, unless you get the franchise quarterback in free agency. It is something that can be a part of what we do, and we can be active. We just need to make wise decisions.”
“I am very confident in him moving forward. I think this year was, in a lot of ways, a major transition year. That is not an excuse — that is just the way it was on many fronts, whether it was scheme-wise or wherever else. I think Ken has handled things well, and I really believe if we can have some stability, and can continue to move forward with the same offensive and defensive schemes, add players and continue to help out there, we have a chance to continue to improve and get better. The best franchises in the NFL are the ones that are the most stable, and that is something we are working toward here.”