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Thursday, September 6, 2012
Updated: September 7, 12:07 PM ET
No. 72: Tennessee Titans

By Morty Ain
ESPN The Magazine

Last year's Rank: 98
Title Track: 72
Ownership: 86
Coaching: 62
Players: 79
Fan Relations: 90
Affordability: 50
Stadium Experience: 89
Bang for the Buck: 33

Turns out Tennessee doesn't need a rocking 'stache roaming the sidelines after all. In Mike Munchak's first season the Titans kept their 134-game sellout streak alive and just narrowly missed the playoffs. Not bad for a man lacking lip foliage. Getting to watch a 9-7 team for over $20 cheaper than the two-win Colts ain't too scruffy either, but LP Field is no Lucas Oil Stadium. Outdated scoreboards, an open air stadium that saps crowd noise and a head-scratching choice of a raccoon for a mascot (yes, we know it's the state animal, but you don't exactly see a stuffed white-tailed deer prancing around Heinz Field do you?) are just some of the drawbacks. Yet ownership proved this off-season they aren't tone-deaf. As part of a $27 million renovation, LP Field is getting 800 seamlessly distributed speakers, 12 brand-spanking new service elevators for upper deck seat holders and the scoreboards are getting swapped for some of the gaudiest in sports: Two monstrous 157' x 54' HD LED screens will shadow each end zone. Also, in the theme of 'recession-friendly,' ownership is offering up 750-800 half-season ticket packages. However, this off-season can't help but feel a bit empty. Tennessee put out the full-court press to reel in their favorite QB back to his collegiate roots. Bud Adams offered Peyton Manning a lifetime contract, and Shoney's even promised a stack of pancakes every day for his entire Titans career, but it was all for naught. Instead Titans fans will have to settle for Steve Hutchinson. He's not Peyton, but at least he'll make better use of the pancakes.