Friday, December 14, 2007

Between Young and the Titans, a Texan Fingers the Titans

Largely missed here in Nashville yesterday was Dallas Morning News NFL beat reporter Rick Gosselin's assessment of Vince Young and the Tennessee Titans:

Vince Young was not a polished passer in college, he was not a polished passer as an NFL rookie and he's not a polished passer now. He has the leadership and legs to win in this league, and that's carried him to this point. But he needs the arm to come around to take the next step as a quarterback. His passer efficiency rating is 66.9 is disappointing. That's slightly above the 66.4 of Rex Grossman, and everyone considers him a wash.

But I blame the Titans more than I blame Young. Give him a reason to throw the ball. The team's top three wide receivers in 2006 were gone by the time training camp rolled around in 2007. His best receiver, Roydell Williams, doesn't even rank in the NFL's top 50 in receiving. Give Young a Terrell Owens or an Andre Johnson then judge him.
Can the local sports media ever bring themselves to be this hard nosed about the team? The Tennessean's diagnosis of the Titan's death-bed condition is cruddy:

The Titans were good enough to bolt to a 6-2 record at the season's halfway point. They were fragile enough to lose the next three games by a combined 58 points.
I'm not sure the Titan's first 8 games were as strong as David Climer--who prefers to see a mystery over attributing blame--suggests. They won squeakers over Atlanta, Houston (the Texans made an amazing 4th quarter comeback after being down by 25 points), and Oakland; they could have just as easily had a 3-5 record then, which would make a dismal 4-9 now.

Perhaps if the local media had spent less time hyping the Titans' playoff chances and more time exhibiting the hard noses of writers elsewhere who look for chinks, then they wouldn't have been fooled by the Titan's collapse. And that collapse falls on the shoulders of the team's management, not on QB Young.

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