The Tennessee Titans wasted no time starting their offseason and have already begun to clean house with the departure of their head coach Mike Vrabel. The organization seemed inclined towards a rebuild, particularly with Derrick Henry’s future uncertain throughout the season. Vrabel’s sudden departure essentially seals Henry’s fate and signals a completely different direction for the Titans.
Many people don’t believe that Tennessee made the right move by firing Vrabel. As for Vrabel, he will likely have a new opportunity before the Super Bowl. Whether Vrabel’s next destination is New England or elsewhere, he won’t be unemployed for long. For the Titans, it means they are starting over. There is no other way to see this, especially considering the likely departure of Henry this offseason.
From an outside perspective, it seems the organization wants a new identity. Despite Tennessee’s success during Vrabel’s tenure, the Titans are looking to move away from their defensive, ground-and-pound philosophy. The team won at least nine games in each of the first four years Vrabel was in charge, even reaching the AFC Championship game as a wildcard team in his second season.
During the tenure of former Titans head coach Jeff Fisher, the team never had more than two successful seasons in a row. While Tennessee hasn’t been good in the past two years, quarterback instability has made it difficult to right the ship. Given this history, Vrabel could likely have steered the team back in the right direction with a little back-and-forth.
Here’s a fun fact. Three of the last four coaches of the Titans (since 2011) were named Mike. Whoever Tennessee brings in this time, whether another Mike or not, will likely be an offensive-minded coach. Usually, organizations looking to make significant changes go from one extreme to another. Tennessee’s General Manager Ran Carthon will have a pivotal role in this hiring decision. While Vrabel’s dismissal may seem puzzling, the desire to develop a more offensive mindset in line with the team’s young franchise quarterback is understandable.