Posted December 11, 2012 on AP on Fox
Mike Munchak's job security depends on wins, and the only thing his Titans have done consistently this season is lose. Munchak said Monday he hasn't talked in a couple weeks with owner Bud Adams, who put everyone in the franchise on notice a month ago that he wanted improvement. ''That's not my worry or my decision,'' Munchak said. ''My job is to get these guys, we have to win football games. I get that. But I think it's all about, for me, is knowing that we're heading in the right direction. I feel we're doing that. I feel we're not getting the wins, and I get that. And that's what I'll be judged on when it's all said and done.'' Munchak said the key will be the team's performance in the final three games. He believes Jake Locker and the other young players are starting to develop as they hoped, while receiver Kenny Britt just turned in his best performance since tearing his right ACL in September 2011. The coach said they'll keep working hard and not worry about any consequences. ''This is going to be a very good football team here,'' Munchak said. ''We're not showing it right now as far as our record goes. ... I feel you see enough stuff. We're close enough. It's here. We'll get it, and hopefully we'll show it over the next three weeks.'' Finishing has been the Titans' biggest challenge this season, and now they will have to play without tight end Jared Cook. Their second-leading receiver with 44 catches tore his right rotator cuff in the 27-23 loss to Indianapolis, ending his season. In the game, the Titans (4-9) blew a 20-7 halftime lead in their fifth loss in six games. That officially eliminated them from playoff contention, clinched a second losing record in three seasons and overshadowed some of the improvement Munchak insists he sees. They have outgained their opponents in total offense each of the past two weeks. Against the Colts, Locker was off to his best start a week after throwing seven straight incompletions in the first half of a loss to Houston. The first-year starter was 15 of 20 for 213 yards with a touchdown pass and a 125.6 passer rating in the first half, but was just 7 of 15 for 49 yards in the second. The Titans also settled for three field goals after getting to the Colts 22 or closer, missing opportunities to blow open their lead. Locker, who has nine turnovers in three games, also missed a couple of key plays that cost the Titans dearly. With the Titans pinned down at the Titans 1, Locker decided against sneaking on first down and dropped back for a throw that was picked off by Cassius Vaughn for a TD. Locker also didn't see the chains moved for a first down on the final drive and instead sneaked on what he thought was third-and-inches. He was stopped for no gain, and the Titans punted three plays later. They never touched the ball again. Munchak said officials didn't signal a first down and they couldn't see that Chris Johnson had gained a first down until the ball was put down. ''Everything that could go wrong went wrong,'' Munchak said. Munchak, in his second season as head coach, had his own issues. He let Rob Bironas attempt a 57-yard field goal late in the first quarter leading 7-0 after watching the kicker connect from 60 yards in warm-ups. Bironas' field goal attempt was wide right, and the Colts took over at midfield where they drove for a tying TD. The Titans had four sacks, hit Andrew Luck repeatedly and held the Colts to 269 yards, the second-fewest yards they've allowed this season. Now they have an extra day before hosting the Jets (6-7) on Monday night. Munchak gave them Monday off and will bring them back for a light workout Tuesday before taking another day off Wednesday. Winning out remains the goal to build confidence in a young team. ''These are tough times to go through when things aren't going your way, you're not getting breaks the way you hoped,'' Munchak said. ''It's how you handle them, and I think this group will grow because of it and be a better team because of what they're going through right now.'' --- Online: http://pro32.ap.org/poll and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Titans' Cook out for season with torn rotator cuff

Tennessee tight end Jared Cook has a torn right rotator cuff and coach Mike Munchak says Cook will be placed on injured reserve for the final three games. Cook caught an 18-yard touchdown pass on the opening drive in Sunday's 27-23 loss to Indianapolis. But he hurt his shoulder catching a screen pass late in the third quarter. The tight end ranks second with 44 catches and...

Titans' Johnson reaches rare 1,000-yard milestone

Tennessee running back Chris Johnson has reached another career milestone in an otherwise bleak losing season for the Titans. Johnson has become just the eighth player in NFL history to run for at least 1,000 yards in each of his first five seasons, topping the plateau in Sunday's loss to Indianapolis. Johnson said Tuesday it's real special to be among elite company, joining...

Jake Locker Fails To Impress vs. Colts

Titans quarterback Jake Locker had 262 yards on 22-of-35 passing with one touchdown and two picks Sunday at Indianapolis.Fantasy Spin:Locker has been a turnover machine in the last three games, handing the ball over nine times in that stretch. Play at your own risk against the Jets in Week 15.

Titans Place TE Jared Cook On Season-Ending IR

John Glennon reports that the Tennessee Titans place TE Jared Cook on season-ending injured reserve after he suffered a torn rotator cuff during Sunday’s loss to the Indianapolis Colts. It’s believed that Cook will require surgery, which is really unfortunate for him given that he’s currently in a contract year. We dropped him out of our Top 50 Free Agents list due to...

NFL Coroner's Report: Tennessee Titans Autopsy

When 32 souls are running about, and there's only enough air for 12 to breathe, it's inevitable that we're going to see 20 of them drop like flies, landing with a thud only heard when a team has collapsed among broken hopes and unreached expectations.The best we can do here at the Football Nation Morgue is cut them open, probe around, and provide a sense of finality to...

Chris Johnson Bottled Up by Colts

Titans running back Chris Johnson crossed 1,000 yards for the fifth time in five years Sunday against the Colts but only had 44 yards on 19 carries.Fantasy Spin:Johnson owners won't like the fact that QB Jake Locker was the leading rusher in Week 14. After seven dynamite weeks, Johnson has clocked in below 4.0 ypc in three straight games. He's failed to score a touchdown...

Kenny Britt Breaks Out vs. Colts

Titans receiver Kenny Britt finally broke out with 143 yards on eight catches Sunday against the Colts.Fantasy Spin:Britt failed to record more than 67 receiving yards in any game this season prior to Sunday. He'll likely draw Jets cornerback Antonio Cromartie in coverage next week.

Jared Cook Placed On IR

Titans tight end Jared Cook has been placed on injured reserve with a torn rotator cuff. SOURCE: John Glennon, TennesseannFantasy Spin:Cook hasn't been a major factor in Tennessee's offense this season but he's been more involved since Jake Locker returned from his shoulder injury. Craig Stevens (20-252-1) is the next man up but isn't an attractive fantasy option.
NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.