CB Cortland Finnegan, the tone setter for the Titans' defense and a volatile character in some people's view, has had a strong season, saying and doing all the right things. Defensive coordinator Jerry Gray has moved Finnegan around a lot and it has paid big dividends for the Titans, still alive in the playoff chase, and Finnegan, who is likely to receive some Pro Bowl consideration.
"(Coach Gray) takes some of the defense and torques it toward every guy's strengths and I think that is one of the marks of a good coach," Finnegan told PFW on Dec. 15. "Me, personally, moving inside, getting to show some versatility covering in the slot, it's been huge for me. Getting to put pressure on the quarterback — blitzing — I think has definitely helped big time for the team and what we're able to do and who we're able to put on the field. It's been a good transition for me."
The Titans have a strong, young nucleus at cornerback, which has helped the secondary be one of the league's best at preventing big plays. A free agent at season's end who made headlines during training camp for briefly leaving the team when contract negotiations weren't going well, Finnegan quickly pointed out that there is a lot of uncertainty beyond this season.
"It is neat that we're building something, but at the same time if you break it down, we have 23 guys in the last year of their deal and most of them are starters on defense," Finnegan said. "So you build chemistry, but at the end of the day it's a business as well."
Finnegan said his agent, Terry Watson, and the Titans have not discussed an extension since his brief camp holdout.
"My desire is to go where I'm wanted," said Finnegan, acknowledging that Week 16 will be extremely emotional because it could be his last home game at LP Field. "I realize through negotiations and talks thus far that it is a business, and if it doesn't work out it is one of those things where, it will hurt, but you just have to realize it is a business."
We hear the Titans would like to work out a long-term deal with Finnegan after the season, but his volatility in the past will be a consideration during negotiations.
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