David Ammenheuser, USA TODAY NETWORK – Tennessee
USA TODAY NETWORK – Tennessee sports director Dave Ammenheuser’s open letter to Titans General Manager Jon Robinson and controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk:
Jon and Amy,
What a wacky week you’ve had. Your team upsets Kansas City and Music City is all aflutter. You openly give Mike Mularkey a boost of confidence, telling all Titans fans that you’ve been behind him all season and also apologize to those fans and him for not saying so publicly earlier.
Then the loss to New England happens. It was simply ugly. Certainly, the Titans were underdogs and nobody (except the men in your locker room) gave them much of a chance. The offensive play-calling was more than a tad questionable; the defense couldn’t stop Tom Brady and company.
Tennessee Titans part with head coach Mike Mularkey
But, that was OK. The Titans went 1-1 in the playoffs. A big step forward for a franchise that hadn’t won a playoff game in a long, long time.
Sunday came and Coach Mularkey delivered an odd press conference. He continually praised offensive coordinator Terry Robiskie. It seems that they watched a different game then we all saw on Saturday. But, as Mularkey has told us before, we (the media, the fans) don’t understand what’s happening on the field.
Well, what we really don’t understand is what happened in the next 12 hours after that press conference. Seventeen hours later, the Titans’ staff sends out a press release that Mularkey is no longer the coach. OK, we won’t get into the stickiness of whether he was fired or it was a mutual decision. You can go to social media and see what your fans thought of Mularkey’s press conference and his defense of some of his specific coaches.
He’s gone. Time to move forward.
Now, what? Well, that’s what this letter is really all about.
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This may be the biggest decision in Nashville professional sports history. You see, Amy and Jon, you simply cannot screw this one up.
The Predators made the right decision when they let Barry Trotz go and replaced him with Peter Laviolette. It was a difficult decision, but one that needed to be made. Barry’s a great guy and a coach that got the Predators to a certain level. Same thing with Mularkey. He got the Titans to the next level. Joe Rexrode and Jason Wolf breaking down the firing of Mike Mularkey from the Titans Lacy Atkins / The Tennessean
But who is the right coach to get the Titans to the next plateau? Laviolette did that with the Predators. The foundation is there to make them a consistent Stanley Cup contender.