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Titans CEO 'counting on' Super Bowl berth in 2016

Titans president and CEO Tommy Smith understands why Tennessee's fan base is hot under the collar.

He feels their pain after watching the Titanstumble to a 2-6 mark following an offseason that saw the team hire a new coach in Ken Whisenhunt before investing roughly $60 million in free agency.

"I am frustrated, and I do get angry. I expect more," Smith told Tthe Tennessean this week before voicing specific expectations for the Titans starting with a Super Bowl appearance after the 2016 regular season.

"I am not in this business to have a top 10 pick," said Smith. "We are looking for playoff games and Super Bowl. I hope we can start to win more games this season and start off next year and have a good season. I think a realistic expectation is to be in the Super Bowl in 2017. People may be disappointed and say, 'What is Smith talking about 2017 for?' Well, I have to have realistic expectations.

"If we could win out this year that would be good, if we can get to the playoffs it would be a gift from God," Smith said. "But next year I am counting on getting in the playoffs, and the next year I am planning on taking it to the next level, and getting back to the Super Bowl."

Lofty expectations in Tennessee feel misguided until the Titans find a quarterback. Benching oft-injuredJake Locker in favor of rookie Zach Mettenberger was the first sign that Whisenhunt is open to rebooting the machine under center after this season -- perhaps with a top-five draft pick.

Finding that quarterback of tomorrow would go a long way toward furnishing the Titans with what they lack most: identity. For now, talk of playoffs and Super Bowl appearances is little more than a Nashville blast of hot air.

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