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Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams dies at 90

Bud Adams TitansThis has not been a good week for aging, prominent Houston football figures. Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams has died at the age of 90, the team is now saying, per Tennesseean reporter Jim Wyatt.

Adams was one of the original AFL co-founders. He owned the Houston Oilers, which he controversially moved to Tennessee in 1997, making him a disliked figure in Houston.

Adams made most of his fortune in petroleum. He was a huge Vince Young proponent, calling for the team to draft the former University of Texas star and demanding that Titans head coach Jeff Fisher play him over Kerry Collins. Adams signed Warren Moon from the CFL after no NFL teams initially expressed interest in him. He also drafted Steve NcNair at a time when black quarterbacks were still questioned.

Knowing his health was failing, he reportedly instructed his front office to spend money in the offseason to put a more competitive team on the field.

Adams remained an ornery, demanding figure in his later years. He put the entire Titans organization on notice last year amid a poor season. He also had an infamous incident in 2009 when he flipped off Buffalo Bills fans and was fined $250,000 by the league.

Adams’ teams appeared in the playoffs 21 times in 50 seasons, though they never won a Super Bowl. His team was the first to play indoors — they played at the Astrodome — but he moved to Tennessee when he decided the Astrodome was no longer a suitable home.

Adams founded the Titans-Oilers organization in 1959. His death comes three days after Bum Phillips passed, the man who coached his franchise from 1975-1980 until being fired by Adams.

The Tennessean has a full obituary on Adams.

Bud Adams acknowledges Titans are overspending, says he is fine with it

Bud-Adams-TitansThe Tennessee Titans have been one of the most active teams in free agency this offseason. As we learned from their uninspiring 6-10 season in 2012, the Titans need help in a lot of areas. However, they are already being criticized for spending recklessly and overpaying for certain free agents.

Tennessee has signed offensive lineman Andy Levitre (six years, $46.8 million), tight end Delanie Walker (four years, $17.5 million), defensive tackle Sammie Lee Hill (three years, $11.4 million), running back Shonn Greene (three years, $10 million) and linebacker Moise Fokou (two years, $2.8 million). The Titans have been incredibly aggressive, but owner Bud Adams said he is perfectly fine with the approach.

“We want the right players, that’s the main thing. We have to get the players we know can perform and make us look like we’re a tough team to play against again,” he said on Thursday, via The Tennessean. “(GM) Ruston (Webster) knows how I feel about this thing now. … He is getting the job done.

“There are certain guys we may have to pay a little more than they should maybe be getting, but I want to win. … We may have to pay some more money, but I’m in. I’m ready to go with it.”

Adams is 90 years old, so from a personal standpoint he doesn’t exactly have time on his side if he wants to see his team become a contender again. The Titans have spent more than $90 million on free agents this offseason, but none of that will matter unless they contend for a playoff spot. Adams certainly doesn’t want to have to have any more discussions like this with the team next season.

“I may have a heart attack if we don’t,” he joked. “I just had my 90th birthday and somebody asked me, ‘Adams, how long are you going to stay at this thing?’ I said ‘I’ve made it 90, so I might as well go to 100.’ And I’d like to get in the playoffs and see some winning football over that stretch, too.”

I doubt the fans are upset to see their team spending so freely. Money doesn’t always turn into victories, but the Titans certainly couldn’t sit on their hands. Have their overdone it? Time will tell, but at least the man who’s writing the checks is on board with the approach.

H/T Pro Football Talk

Titans owner Bud Adams seems ready to fire Mike Munchak

mike-munchakThe Tennessee Titans were destroyed 55-7 by the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, and the team’s latest brutal loss may cost head coach Mike Munchak his job.

Titans owner Bud Adams said on Sunday he was so disgusted by the game that he turned off the TV before the game ended. He also sounded like a man prepared to fire Munchak.

“I like Mike, I really do,” Adams told The Tennesseean Sunday. “But liking him and getting the job done are two different things,” Adams said. “If he is not getting the job done, that is what I have to find out. Right now, we are not looking very good. Something is wrong and I want to find out what the problem is and what needs to be done to fix it.”

The Titans are rebuilding with second-year player Jake Locker at quarterback. Locker was 13-for-30 for 140 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. Adams says the offensive line was problematic.

“[Locker] didn’t have a chance,” Adams said. “They were on him like a dog on a cat. He was kind of fighting for his life.”

Adams told The Tennesseean he plans to talk with Munchak and the front office after the season before making any decisions. He wants to find out what Munchak thinks is wrong with the team. He also says he hears complaints from fans and empathizes with them.

“I’ll be 90 years old on my next birthday on January 3. I am in good health, but it is a chore to fly up to Nashville and when I get up there I don’t like to see them play poorly. The fans are not happy with me. I need to figure out what I need to do to make things work and see if changes need to be made.”

Munchak heard about Adams’ comments, and he hopes the owner will show patience with the team.

“You can’t lose perspective of the fact that sometimes it takes a little longer to build something than one season or a season-and-a-half,” Munchak said Monday, per The Tennessean. “We’ve had one offseason here since I have been head coach, so we haven’t had a lot of time with the players. We have a short period of time to fix it, but I feel very confident that we will.

“But I feel good about how we are going to get there, and it will be up to Mr. Adams to see if he agrees with me.”

You may recall that Adams put the entire organization on notice last month following the team’s embarrassing 51-20 home loss to the Bears. Between that defeat and this one, I think we know which direction Adams is leaning. Get ready to return to assistant coach life, Munch.

Bud Adams puts Titans organization on notice after embarrassing loss

The Tennessee Titans were trounced by the Chicago Bears 51-20 on Sunday in one of the most embarrassing losses of the season. They committed five turnovers, had a punt blocked for a touchdown, and an interception returned for a touchdown. They gave up three touchdown passes from Jay Cutler to Brandon Marshall. They were down 28-2 after one quarter, and they were down 51-12 at one point. The game was going so badly that LBS writer Steve DelVecchio said over Twitter that the team should refund the fans. Apparently team owner Bud Adams felt similarly.

“In my 50 years of owning an NFL franchise, I am at a loss to recall a regular season home game that was such a disappointment for myself, and fans of the Titans,” Adams told The Tennessean. “We were grossly outcoached and outplayed from start to finish today.

“At this time, all aspects of the organization will be closely evaluated, including front office, coaches and players over the next seven games. If performance and competitiveness does not improve, I will look at all alternatives to get back to having the Titans become a playoff and championship football team.”

Things were so bad that mostly only Bears fans remained by the end of the game. Even Adams couldn’t stand to watch the disaster — he left in the third quarter.

The Tennessean has quotes from many other frustrated players, including Sen’Derrick Marks and Derrick Morgan.

Second-year coach Mike Munchak said after the game to put the blame on him for the loss, but we don’t think he heard his owner’s comments at that point. It probably doesn’t matter, because his fate will probably be the same. With the Titans at 3-6 and coming off a loss this bad, Adams will probably want to make a coaching change. And let’s be real about this too: Adams isn’t exactly the best owner around.