It's been a very disappointing season for the Tennessee Titans and head coach Mike Munchak, who took them to a surprising 9-7 record in his first season.
The Titans have taken a few steps back in Munchak's second season, and there's been a lot of talk about the entire coaching staff's job security.
Offensive coordinator Chris Palmer was fired just a few weeks ago.
It's been made clear that the talent on this team should be better than their current 4-9 record, and that ultimately falls on the head coach.
Now, the Titans will welcome in a New York Jets team that hasn't had any shortage of headlines this season—and mostly for all the wrong reasons.
The Titans have a great opportunity to show what they're capable of heading into next season with another big win in a nationally televised game.
In Week 6, the Titans pulled off the upset over the Steelers at home.
However, the Jets are still battling for a playoff spot despite all of their problems. The Titans have a great opportunity here to knock out a team that is viewed as a villain by many fans.
If the Titans could make a statement in front of a national viewing audience, then it could go a long way toward securing Munchak's job for another season.
For that to happen, both the offense and the defense have to play well. A big reason why the Titans are 4-9 is due to the fact that they haven't put together a complete game since their last win over the Dolphins.
That was way back in Week 10.
This is Munchak's last chance to give the higher powers that be a reason to keep him for another season. A loss here will almost guarantee no better than a five-win season.
That wouldn't just be taking a step back from last season; it would be throwing the car in reverse and heading toward the cliff.
Next week, the Titans face what could be their toughest challenge of the season in a trip to Lambeau Field to take on the Packers.
Nothing short of a miracle will lead to the Titans pulling off this upset.
That leaves a home finale against the Jaguars left on the schedule, and even a win to end the 2012 campaign would do little for Munchak's job security.
Aside from the win over the Steelers, the Titans are lacking a signature win this season that really makes you feel good about Munchak as the longterm answer as head coach.
A win over the Jets on Monday Night Football could at least make a case that Munchak is still bringing a competitive team that is maybe just missing a few more pieces for next season.
The Jets may be a mess right now, but their defense is still to be respected. If the Titans offense can come together with a good game plan, then there may be hope after all heading into next season for this evolving offense.
As for the defense, it has shown mild improvement over the past few weeks. They've just failed to put together a solid effort for four quarters.
This Titans defense has a great opportunity to have one of their strongest showings of the season against a dysfunctional Jets offense.
If the Jets offense breaks out, then it would almost certainly mean that defensive coordinator Jerry Gray is next on the chopping block.
With both coordinators gone, it would be very improbable to see Munchak make it to next season.
This game may not have any playoff implications for the Titans, but you better believe that Munchak will be coaching like it's his Super Bowl.
It's now or never for Munchak to prove this team is better than their 4-9 record on the national stage. If he can't do that against a bad Jets team, then its probably time for the Titans to cut ties at season's end.
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