JOE BIDDLE: Titans’ makeover work in progress

2014 Titans preseason schedule released (Image 1)

The Titans' makeover is still a work in progress. They added a lot of new faces on both sides of the ball.

That's what you have to do when you go 6-10 and your defense gives up a franchise record 471 points and last year's NFL worst ranking with 55 touchdowns allowed.

Titans General Manager Ruston Webster knows the culture has to change and who better exemplifies the attitude the Titans need to adopt than someone from the defending Super Bowl Champion Ravens and their dominant defense?

How many times through the years have we seen the Ravens impose their will on the Titans?

Of all the draft and free agents signees, I believe Bernard Pollard will bring as much or more to the table when it comes to showing others how to play with toughness and a pit bull attitude.

Pollard is not the biggest, strongest, fastest strong safety in the NFL. But he may be the baddest.

Just ask Patriots running back Stevan Ridley, whose lights went out after being on the wrong end of a helmet-to-helmet hit by Pollard in last season's AFC Championship Game.

Pollard was surrounded on the Ravens' defense by future Hall of Famers Ed Reed and Ray Lewis. Yet as many accolades as they received, it was Pollard who led the team in tackles with 98.

He wants to bring that Ravens intensity to the Titans, a goal shared by new defensive assistant Gregg Williams.

“We have to go out there and let it all hang out, man,'' Pollard said.

“For the most part, I am going to go out there and knock the (urine) out of somebody on the field,'' he added, extending an open invitation to other Titans defenders. “Hopefully, you will follow. That's the mindset we have to have on this defense.''

For Pollard, playing defense is pretty simple. You have to beat the man across from you. If everyone can accomplish that, the results will be what Titans fans have been craving. The fans are tired of the Titans defense getting run over in games.

Maybe with the addition of Gregg Williams, Pollard and veteran free safety George Wilson, we won't have to sit there on Sundays and watch opponents complete touchdown passes as the Titans secondary players hold up their hands, signaling they were confused as to which Titan had the receiver. There has been far too much of that the last two years.

Beat the man across from you.

Pollard's enthusiasm and fire has been contagious.

He is someone who can mentor and play big brother to third year linebacker Akeem Ayers and others.

“(Pollard) knows what it takes to get there,'' Ayers said. “He knows what a winning team looks like, so us as young guys, we pretty much only know one thing. And we're trying to flip the culture here.

“We're trying to change the way we play defense, our mindset and all that,'' Ayers added. “He is definitely somebody we can look to — to guide us in that right direction.''

There's nothing wrong with trying to instill Baltimore's salty personality into this Titans defense.

Bernard Pollard certainly won't shy away from exerting his influence on the field.
Every team could use a Bernard Pollard. He is a Jekyll and Hyde.

“I flip that switch on the football field,'' Pollard said.

We can give thanks for that.

Contact Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at

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