Long-time readers of Total Titans know I like to reach out to fellow bloggers on occasion, to get their thoughts on certain players. I’m doing the same now, but with a twist - this time my inquiries are about coaches.
Mike Munchak is reported to be the front-runner to be the new Titans head coach and may even be announced as such shortly. However, I don’t want to forget two outsiders who have interviewed for the position, Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell and Falcons offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey.
First, here is Rob’s take on Mularkey:
Mike Mularkey has been a big reason for the success of the Atlanta Falcons over the past few seasons. He is absolutely a players' coach, and has a great penchant for trick plays on offense - when he feels he has the pieces. He is great at utilizing "hybrid" players, but while he does like to spread the ball around when the situation calls for it, he is still a run-first, punishing offensive style of coach.
Mularkey has had success when he is surrounded by a better pool of talent. I know that sounds ridiculous, but not every coach can do what he has with even the best roster. Many people want to point to the Buffalo Bills, which was his only stint as a head coach for two seasons. He finished those two years with a record of 14-18, but the highlight was winning the final six games of the season in his rookie year. That proves the players support him, and his success has carried over to running Atlanta's offense.
He loves to have a punishing running back, which he has had in Michael Turner over the last three years. Mularkey will also feature the tight end in the offense, having been one himself in the league.
Personally, I don't see Tennessee offering him their head coaching position. I don't see Bud Adams going outside the organization at all. But if Mularkey were to take over the Titans, it would mean more carries for Chris Johnson (more like two years ago), and the team would need a more accurate passer to find Kenny Britt and Bo Scaife. The offense would immediately improve.
And now, here’s what Andy thinks about Fewell, including two articles he wrote:
I actually think Perry Fewell can be a better head coach than a defensive coordinator. His defensive schemes are built to fail, as he played too passively (Tampa 2 and also less press coverage). This meant that the Giants had success vs the weaker QBs and trouble with the better ones.
Part I - Memo to Coughlin and Fewell: You play against good QBs in the playoffs
Part II - Revisit memo to Fewell and Coughlin
The reason why Fewell can actually be a good head coach is three-fold:
1) He has high energy.
2) The players play for the guy. They like him.
3) He does listen to his player's feedback to a certain degree, which is good and gives the players that balance of respect.
I think if the Titans got him, he could work out. Your point about a head coach being less X's and O's and more about the leadership is very true. Fewell gets his players to play for him, so that is a good place for any head coach to start.
Thanks to Andy and Rob for their thoughts on these Titans coaching candidates. Be sure to check them out on Ultimate NYG and Dirty Bird South for more of their thoughts on the Giants and Falcons.