The Tennessee Titans added several new coaches to their staff, and while they are collectively excited for their new opportunity, no one should envy their jobs.
Especially on one side of the ball.
Tennessee finished 12th in total offense in 2009, thanks to running back Chris Johnson’s NFL record 2,509 yards from scrimmage. A record that stands today.
Since then, the Titans have finished 27th, 17th, 26th, 22nd, 29th, and 30th in the league in total yards.
Translation…the offense has been…for lack of a better word…offensive.
These new coaches are now faced with the unenviable task of getting Tennessee back on track, and back into the end zone.
Terry Robiskie – Offensive Coordinator
Terry Robiskie joins the Titans after spending the last eight seasons as the wide receivers coach for the Atlanta Falcons. He will replace Jason Michael as the team’s offensive coordinator and play caller.
While the Titans are looking to become a run-based offense, Robiskie should be a valuable resource to new wide receivers coach Bob Btatkowski, who is now responsible for turning Tennessee’s underachieving unit into an asset to the offense this season.
Robiskie was instrumental in Julio Jones’ ascent to one of the league’s elite receivers while in Atlanta. He is also credited with grooming Jones’ predecessor, Roddy White, into a viable threat on the outside as well.
Titans receiver Harry Douglas, a perennial third option throughout his career, reunites with Robiskie after producing a 1,000 yard season in 2013 when injuries pushed him to the top of Atlanta’s depth chart.
Russ Grimm – Offensive Line Coach
Russ Grimm, Tennessee’s new offensive line coach, brings a Hall of Fame playing career (Washington), three Super Bowl rings, and 21 years of NFL coaching experience along with him.
Grimm was a key cog in the Redskins’ dominant offensive line from 1981-1991. They were the catalyst for Washington’s potent rushing attack, and were affectionately known as “The Hogs”.
As a player, he embodied the traits that head coach Mike Mularkey is looking for out of his current unit…tough, physical, and smart.
Traits that are tailor-made for a smash mouth identity.
Tennessee’s offensive line was one of, if not the worst in the entire league last season. The Titans were 25th in rushing, and dead last in sacks allowed in 2015.
Quarterback Marcus Mariota was sacked an alarming 38 times…in just 12 starts.
While the stats were grim (no pun intended), the cupboard is certainly not bare for the Titans up front.
With the addition of Jack Conklin, the 8th overall pick in this year’s draft, the Titans now have three first rounders on the o’line (Chance Warmack – guard, Taylor Lewan – left tackle).
All three are under the age of 30.
If the offensive line’s woes last year was a product of coaching, as Warmack alluded to this offseason, then Tennessee could see a dramatic improvement from this unit under Grimm’s tutelage in 2016.
Tennessee’s defense took a huge step in the right direction last season after adding Dick LeBeau to the coaching staff, finishing 12th in yards allowed. They finished 27th in that category in 2014.
The Titans are hoping that this year’s additions to the coaching staff will help the offense take that step this season.