Titans hire Jon Robinson as new GM, coaching search continues
The Tennessee Titans have agreed to name Jon Robinson their new GM. Robinson most recently served as director of player personnel for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Titans fired head coach Ken Whisenhunt in November, then parted ways with GM Ruston Webster the day after the regular season ended, a season in which the Titans finished 3-13 and earned the number one pick in this years NFL Draft.
Robinson is from Union City, Tennessee, which is less than a three hour drive to Nashville. So the desire to stay in Nashville and build a winning team should be a dream scenario for Robinson. He will have his work cut out for him rebuilding a team that is lacking talent at most positions. Fortunately, for Robinson, he will have the number one pick in this years draft to start that rebuilding process. Also, with the performance of Marcus Mariota in his rookie season, quarterback is one position that Robinson will not have to address.
He spent the last two years with Tampa Bay after serving as a scout, and then director of scouting for 12 years in New England. In that time he developed a relationship with Josh McDaniels, who could be considered for the Titans head coach vacancy.
What is next for the Titans?
Obviously the next step for the Titans is to acquire a head coach. With coaching vacancies being filled by the minute, options are becoming sparse as the days and hours tick off the clock. I do agree with the decision to hire your GM first, then locate a head coach that will work well with Robinson’s visions. I am also glad the Titans moved fairly quickly with the GM hire. Now, as far as the next Tennessee Titans head coach, here are the options I see unfolding in the next 24-48 hours.
- The Titans choose to keep Mike Mularkey as head coach. It is reported ownership likes Mularkey and would like to keep him on as head coach. The fact that Tennessee has not been parading candidates in and out yet to this point, seems to favor the decision to ultimately keep Mularkey. To avoid completely rocking the boat, this seems the likely decision ownership is going to make. This also may have been a behind-closed-doors term made by ownership when hiring Robinson as GM.
- Josh McDaniels. Robinson has a history with McDaniels and McDaniels has a history of working well with quarterbacks. This combo could be successful in developing Marcus Mariota.
- Lovie Smith. This is the first name I thought of when hearing the news that Tennessee was likely to hire Robinson from Tampa Bay. Many people, including myself, thought the firing of Lovie Smith was shocking, puzzling, and unwarranted. To my knowledge, there should be no ill will between Robinson and Smith in the way everything went down in Tampa Bay. The two actually had a good thing going and the franchise was showing promise. This may be the most unlikely scenario of the three, but definitely interesting water cooler conversation for the next several days.
As of now, the Titans have no scheduled meetings with McDaniels or Smith. They do have interviews setup with former Buffalo Bills coach Doug Marrone, Detroit Lions Defensive coordinator Teryl Austin, and of course current interim coach Mike Mularkey. The decision made today, along with the coaching hire decision, and how the Titans handle the draft and free agency period, is going to decide the fate of this teetering franchise for years to come. You have to love the off-season.
Brandon Reid covers the NFL and Tennessee Titans for MyFantasySportsTalk.com, you can follow him on Twitter @New_Breid
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