The life of an NFL coach can be a thin line between in and out, and at the conclusion of every season there are the usual comings and goings. This year is no different and were seeing rumors of hiring and firing even at the start of post season play. In reality, no-one’s job is safe it appears.
Let’s take a look at the case of Tennessee Titans coach Mike Mularkey. Even before last Sundays game against the Jacksonville Jaguars in week 17, it was rumored throughout those in the know, both within the NFL and the team’s organization, that if the team were to have lost the game, Mike Mularkey would lose his job. Harsh indeed.
Well, that same train of thought was carried on to Saturdays wildcard game again the Kansa City Chiefs. Even though Tennessee went on to dispatch the Chiefs 22-21 and get the win, there was an air of cautiousness in the dressing room following the win. Mularkey addressed the press following his teams comeback win and said of the rumors about his job security that it was “ridiculous” and that the situation had had a “had a big effect on me” because it also had started to effect his family as well.
Mularkey was at pains to point out that within the team and the organization, he had heard nothing to suggest that his job was in any way secure.
He said: “No, I haven’t had any support to say that I was. No, I just assumed the worst.”
It’s not just Mularkey that is upset with the situation. It appears that his players are less than happy with the way he has been left wondering ‘what’s next?’ It was pointed out by Titans cornerback Logan Ryan the team had been missing from the playoffs since 2008 and Brian Orakpo weighed in to bring up Mularkey’s record during the last two seasons which stands at 18-14.
Orakpo stated to the press: “We’ve had back-to-back winning seasons. We made the playoffs. We won a playoff game,” adding: “What more do people want? It’s f—ing ridiculous.”
Should the team’s owners avoid firing Mularkey when the playoff dream comes to an end, the next big question for all concerned will be whether Mularkey gets one more year or a contract extension on his deal that ends at the end of the 2018 season.