Tennessee Titans keep coach Mike Munchak

3:24 PM, Dec 31, 2012   |    comments
Mike Munchak
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By Jim Wyatt The Tennessean

The Titans are keeping coach Mike Munchak for the 2013 season, owner Bud Adams told The Tennessean today.

"I think he is the right guy to get the job done," Adams said. "He just needs the right people around him."

Senior executive vice president Mike Reinfeldt has been fired, Adams said.

"He has two more years to go on his contract but I think we'd be better off without him," Adams said. "I don't think he was getting the job done. Mike Reinfeldt is out."

Munchak is 15-17 in two seasons as head coach. The Titans went 9-7 in 2011 but just missed out on the playoffs. This season they got off to a 1-4 start and finished 6-10 with a 38-20 victory over the Jaguars on Sunday. He has two years remaining on his contract.

"Mike Munchak will be the head coach," Adams said. "The way we played yesterday is an indication of the way we can play. I believe Mike Munchak can get the job done."

Ruston Webster, who just completed his first year as Titans general manager, will remain in his role but is expected to gain more control over personnel matters with Reinfeldt's departure.

Reinfeldt, who played for the Houston Oilers from 1976-83 and had front-office experience with the Raiders, Packers and Seahawks, was Titans GM from 2007-11.

He was promoted to senior executive vice president/chief operating officer earlier this year when Webster was elevated from vice president of player personnel, a position he'd held for two seasons, to GM.

Webster was longtime scout and personnel executive for the Buccaneers and later the Seahawks before joining the Titans.

The Titans have not been to the playoffs since 2008 and have not won a playoff game since 2003. Adams said his expectation is that the Titans will be in the playoffs next season.

"I think Mike can get us there," Adams said. "We played some pretty good football this year but in other games we did not. I think Mike has the right people in there working with him. He is going to get the job done."

Asked if there would be changes on the coaching staff, Adams said: "That's up to him (Munchak) but I think we'll have some changes."

Earlier this season Munchak fired offensive coordinator Chris Palmer and promoted quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains to replace him. Defensive coordinator Jerry Gray has also been under fire this season, as the Titans allowed a franchise record 471 points. They went 1-5 in the AFC South.

"Obviously I feel like I'm the guy for the job," Munchak said on Sunday after the Titans beat the Jaguars. "I feel like we're going to get this thing going. At 6-10, we're not happy. We know we have some work ahead of us. But I think we are getting the right guys here and doing it the right way."

Munchak is scheduled to speak with the media later today.

Players have continued to support Munchak, who was a Hall of Fame guard with the Houston Oilers and was Titans offensive line coach from 1997-2010. He had never been a head coach at any level when Adams selected him to replace Jeff Fisher.

"Munch is the best coach I have ever been coached by, bar none, and I have been to a Super Bowl," veteran guard Deuce Lutui, who went to Super Bowl XLIII with the Cardinals, said on Sunday. "I feel good about this team and feel we'll be really good in the near future. Coach Munchak has experienced some good games, and some bad games. And he's defined the character of who he is through those experiences. We wanted to win for him. Hopefully he'll be back."

Reach Jim Wyatt at jwyatt@tennessean.com or 615-259-8015.

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