Thanks to Tim McClellan of Jaguars Journal for participating in this question and answer exchange. Following are his questions for me and my answers. My questions for him, with his answers, are here.
Jaguars Journal: The Titans have had an amazing run through the first ten weeks of the season. At what point does overconfidence start to creep into the equation?
Total Titans: Good question. The Titans are confident but there’s no telling if or when they might become overconfident. It certainly won’t be against the Jags, for whom they have a lot of respect.
JJ: With Kerry Collins clearly assuming the role as the starting QB, what happens with Vince Young? Knowing that Collins isn’t exactly a long-term solution, how much effort is being put into trying to develop Young, or has the team already moved on?
TT: I’m keeping my fingers crossed that Collins will remain healthy, as many Titans fans are. Young will play if necessary, a move that I don’t believe the Titans want to happen. Yes, the Titans have moved on.
JJ: What do you expect to see happen with Albert Haynesworth after this season comes to an end? Clearly, he will command a good bit of interest from other teams willing and able to pay him significantly more than the Titans might be in a position to pony up. Will they spend what is necessary to keep him, or will they practice fiscal restraint and hope for the best?
TT: Titans GM Mike Reinfeldt is fiscally conservative as a general rule, although there have been a few exceptions (Shaun Alexander and Walter Jones) when he was in Seattle. Big Al will command top dollar, assuming he doesn’t get injured. He was born and raised in South Carolina and if he had his druthers, would prefer to play in Tennessee, Carolina or Atlanta. The Titans are in better cap shape than the Panthers or Falcons, so they have an edge there. There’s no telling how much stupid money some other team might offer, though, so I’d rate the Titans chances of resigning him at no better than 50-50.
JJ: What has been the key to the success that the Titans have seen this year when expectations coming into the season were mixed?
TT: The defense has been much better than expected. A lot of relatively unknown players have stepped up to provide great depth, especially on the d-line. Tennessee has not had much of a dropoff on defense when they rotate players in and out.
JJ: What key matchups do you like and not like about the upcoming game in Jacksonville?
TT: The matchups I like best are on the line of scrimmage. The Titans’ lines on both sides of the ball seem to have an advantage. The Jaguars secondary has an advantage over the Titans receivers. When the Titans have to throw the ball they’ll have some tough matchups.
TT: It should be a low scoring game and the team that can run the ball best should win. I like the Titans’ chances.