Munchak: Owner expects playoffs
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee coach Mike Munchak knows what he has to if he wants to improve his chances of keeping his job.
Ensure the Titans are still playing in January.
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Mike Munchak's future will be a primary theme in Tennessee if the Titans fall short of the owner's expectations, writes Paul Kuharsky. Blog
Munchak said Thursday he usually talks with Bud Adams before the season opener to discuss roster cuts, moves and expectations. The owner wants playoffs and wins from his team.
"He's looking forward to a good year, and so are we and we'll just kind of see how it goes," said Munchak, in his third season.
A postseason berth would be this franchise's first since 2008 and would go a long way to help Munchak keep his job. The Titans missed a berth in Munchak's first season in 2011 on a tiebreaker going 9-7.
"We have the talent in there, and now we have to put it to work," Adams told The Tennessean. "I think we're going to have a good team, and I'll be real unhappy if we don't. We put out a lot of money to get what we got and I think we have some people who can get us in the championship."
The Titans open the season Sunday against Pittsburgh.
Adams, who turns 91 in January, approved spending more than $100 million this offseason. The Titans brought in 13 new free agents and seven draft picks for a team opening Sunday at Pittsburgh.
"If we don't make the playoffs, then we're sitting (still)," Adams told The Tennessean. "We have some great talent we brought in and we paid a lot of money to get them in there. I am banking on us getting it done this year."
Munchak has a four-year contract, but Adams fired chief operating officer Mike Reinfeldt a day after last season ended with a 6-10 record. Asked then if Adams had given his coach a mandate of playoffs or else, Munchak said not yet.
Munchak has been a popular pick as one of the NFL coaches likely to be fired during the season. The coach wouldn't say Thursday if Adams had given him a number of wins needed to keep his job.
"He just wants success," Munchak said of the man who has been his boss since this franchise drafted him in 1982. "He just wants us to win and be playing in January, which I assume all of us want. We all know what the expectations are for all of us. That's something we won't talk a whole lot about."
The Titans last won a playoff game in January 2004, and they lost in the postseason in 2007 as a wild card and in 2008 with the NFL's best record at 13-3. Tennessee has sold out 144 consecutive games. But tickets still remain for the eight regular season games, though both preseason games were announced as sellouts.
Munchak said Adams is happy with the excitement around the team and the work the Titans have done moving in the right direction. But the Titans face a tough start opening at Pittsburgh and then in Houston, the city Adams' franchise called home between 1960 and 1996.
"Two road games and see what we're all about," Munchak said. "I think that's what he wants to find out, too."
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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