After missing the playoffs for two straight years, the Titans went 9-7 in 2011 and looked like a team that was moving in the right direction.
They went 6-10 the next year, had another losing record in 2013 and then fired head coach Mike Munchak. They won five games over the next two seasons before showing signs of life again in 2016. The Titans went 9-7 and won eight of their final 12 games to again build hopes that the team is on the verge of better days.
One of the messages from players after offseason work started this week is the same you could glean from how things went after the 2011 season. Linebacker Brian Orakpo said the team has “a lot of work to do” and running back DeMarco Murray said last year’s strides didn’t go far enough.
“The message from this morning: Last year is last year, but obviously we are on the right track,” Murray said, via the team’s website. “We have a year under our belt, knowing each other, and knowing what it takes to accomplish what we want to accomplish. But I don’t think anybody is patting ourselves on the back from last year — nine wins and no playoffs. Last year is last year, but this year we obviously want to get better and make something happen.”
The Titans addressed their secondary by signing cornerback Logan Ryan and safety Johnathan Cyprien and have several rising players on both sides of the ball. A pair of first-round picks in this year’s draft should build that group along with expectations that the Titans can continue to progress after a leap forward last year.