After 89 years on earth, he couldn’t take any more. At his age he didn’t have to.
Bud Adams left the building Sunday. His Titans were taken behind the barn by the Bears. It wasn’t only hard to stomach, it was hazardous to his health.
Adams vamoosed in the third quarter of the 51-20 debacle. Hopped in the limousine and headed to the airport. His private jet would have him in Houston in time for dinner. That is, if he had any appetite left by then.
Adams publicly put the organization on notice. Improve or put your position at risk. That covered everyone whose checks he signs, from the front office, to the coaches, to the players, to the groundskeepers.
“Everyone is going to be evaluated,’’ said cornerback Alterraun Verner.
“The mood is obviously not good,’’ added rookie wide receiver Kendall Wright. “We just shot ourselves in the foot all day.’’
Munchak stood up and took the first bullet.
“If a team underperforms, I’m the first guy you should look at for that, not anybody else, not assistant coaches. It starts with me, ’’ Munchak said Sunday.
“If we don’t finish the season the way we should, then what needs to happen will happen. … I think those are the decisions that are made when the season is over, as far as what this (game) means to anybody.’’
Adams has been known to change horses in the middle of the stream.
Former Oilers coach Jack Pardee found that out the hard way as he was fired and replaced by Jeff Fisher with four games left in the 1994 season.
Bud gave Fisher the job, but two years ago, Bud thought it best if the two men parted ways. Bud was a Vince Young man, Fisher not so much. Fisher knew Young was a cancer in the locker room and inept on the field because he never mastered the playbook.
It speaks volumes for Fisher’s judgment.Young has now been cut by two other NFL teams and is currently out of the league.
But the Titans belong to Bud and he will always be involved in the football operation. He is not one to remain in the background and say nothing when the franchise starts to decay.
Bud does have a vote in all this. The only vote needed.
“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 a local media source Sunday.
“We were grossly out-coached and outplayed from start to finish.’’
He and Munchak had a telephone conversation Monday. He knows Adams is not a happy camper.
“I would probably have said the same thing if I were him,’’ Munchak said. “This is his team. He expects us to play well, especially at home. That’s our job. That’s my job - to make sure we are out there playing our best.
“When you line up on Sunday, it’s all about winning and that’s what we need to do.’’
Six losses realistically put the Titans out of any playoff picture. The odds are long they can run off seven straight wins in a row.
One thing for sure: It’s impossible for them to play any worse than they did against Da Bears.
Sports Columnist Joe Biddle is a four-time sports writer of the year in Tennessee. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.