Amy Adams Strunk inherited a mess when she assumed the role of controlling owner of the Tennessee Titans in March 2015.
She had no quarterback, no running backs, no offensive line. She also had a front office that failed to bring in elite talent, and a coaching staff that failed to get the most out of the players that were brought in.
Her franchise was the laughing stock of the NFL, but no one in or around the team was laughing.
In fact, it was Adams Strunk herself that received the lions share of the criticism for her perceived disinterest in seeing things improve.
Fast forward to today and the Titans are relevant. They have a talented young franchise quarterback, a good coaching staff, and a roster full of players that fit their scheme and identity.
Tennessee has playoff aspirations for the 2017-18 season, and the person most responsible receives the least amount of praise.
Yep…Ms. Adams Strunk.
Lets not forget that many of her moves were initially met with great criticism…starting with head coach Mike Mularkey.
Call-in radio shows were filled with angry Titans fans when Adams Strunk removed the interim tag from Mike Mularkey last year. He had a losing record as a head coach as well as a losing record as Tennessee’s interim coach in 2015.
Fully aware of her rookie status as head honcho of a professional football team, Adams Strunk made the shrewd decision to listen to her players.
Numerous players spoke up on behalf of coach Mularkey, and ownership took that into account when making their decision.
I firmly believe that the chemistry in the locker room among the players and coaches today is a result of that. The players’ voices were heard…and they literally ran through walls for coach Mularkey last season.
Jon Robinson being named as the team’s new general manager was also met with a silent applause.
Once again, people pointed to Adams Strunk’s inability to build a front office due to Robinson never holding the position before.
And we all know how that has worked out for the Titans so far.
As for the roster itself, the first two first-round picks under her watch were Marcus Mariota (2015) and Jack Conklin (2016), two productive cornerstone players for the foreseeable future.
Beyond personnel decisions, Adams Strunk reached into her pockets to give the entire complex a makeover. The players raved about the new facilities and state of the art locker room.
Something that won’t be lost on potential free agents making visits.
Nissan Stadium was also upgraded, even down to a new concessions vendor to better the fan experience at games.
Adams Strunk is no longer the faceless figure behind the scenes. She has a home in Nashville now, and is now a member of the NFL Hall of Fame committee.
She’s been visible at games, and gracious with the fans when she has a chance to interact with them.
From inheriting a poor front office and roster, to rumors of the team being for sale, to scrutiny about the team’s ownership structure, Amy Adams Strunk continues to endure as the team continues to improve.
And while names like Marcus Mariota, DeMarco Murray, and Jon Robinson steal the headlines, the real MVP for the Titans is the ownership.