Jerry Gray joins the Titans

Two days after saying that he wouldn’t be leaving the University of Texas, Jerry Gray is gone.

The Titans have announced that Gray will serve as the team’s defensive coordinator under new coach Mike Munchak.

Gray replaces Chuck Cecil, who was fired in January, before head coach Jeff Fisher was shown the door.

“Jerry has a number of qualities that I think are assets for this role.  He played the game, he coached a position group and he has coordinating experience,” Munchak said in a statement released by the team.  “I respected him as a player and coach and he was someone that I knew right away that I wanted to talk to about the position.  It was evident to me during interview process that he will fit well with us — he is familiar with our system and the type of players that we have on the roster.  He is a great teacher and a great person, and I think the players will respond well to his style.”

Gray’s coaching career began in 1997, with the then-Tennessee Oilers.  He left in 2001 to become defensive coordinator of the Bills, serving under former Titans defensive coordinator Gregg Williams.

“I am excited to have this opportunity,” Gray said.  “I have known Mike for a number of years and if he is a head coach like he was a player or a position coach, we are going to be in great shape, because he has had so much success and everything he does.  I am looking forward to really getting to know our personnel on defense and creating a defense that takes advantage of our strengths. I am an old school guy that likes to get after the opponent, but you also have to have the players to that — you can’t force those things.  Our defense will fit what we can do well.  I also want to thank Coach Brown and University of Texas. I know the timing of this isn’t ideal, but this was something that I couldn’t turn down.”

Of course, Brown and the Longhorns may have the last laugh, if college football is playing games while the NFL is mired in a lockout.