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Division struggles indict Titans

11/18/2013

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Second place teams all over the NFL look at the Tennessee Titans and have to be jealous.

They get to play in a division with the Jaguars and Texans? Sign us up for that.

The Jaguars are 1-9. The Texans are 2-8.

Only one other division has fewer than seven wins between its third- and fourth-place teams. The Buccaneers and Falcons have four wins in the NFC South.

The trouble with the second-place Titans of the AFC South is that they’ve provided two of the three wins for the Jaguars and Texans.

If the Titans were where they thought they’d be, then having the terrible Jags and the sinking Texans should account for four, or at least three, wins this season. Instead, at best, the Titans will get two wins out of them. And really, Jacksonville (Dec. 22 in Florida) and Houston (Dec. 29 in Nashville) will look at rematches and see opportunities to win again.

As Jim Wyatt of The Tennessean points out, Mike Munchak’s Titans have been horrible in the AFC South. He’s got a 4-11 division record in his three season at the helm, 1-8 in his last nine and 0-3 this season.

The basic, fundamental path to success in the NFL is winning division games. Wild Card berths typically rely on piecing together some success and getting help from other teams.

The Titans can’t help themselves or count on anyone else. Remarkably, because there are only five good teams in the AFC, the Titans can still talk about opportunity and not sound totally ridiculous.

They are one of six teams at 4-6 behind the 5-5 Jets and Dolphins, and they’ve beaten the Jets.

It’s crazy to think the Titans still have life, because they are playing so poorly. Never mind this thin playoff possibility. If they don’t fare better in their AFC South rematches, how will Munchak even be able to say they’ve gotten better?