Sportress of Blogitude

Mike Vrabel ’embarrassed’ by sideline collision with official

The upstart Tennessee Titans obviously are riding high heading into Sunday’s showdown with the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game, but head coach Mike Vrabel is feeling a little low over a comical incident that occurred during the team’s divisional-round victory over the Baltimore Ravens last Saturday.

Vrabel was absolutely trucked in a blindside collision with side judge Eugene Hall at some point during the 28-12 victory. One moment, the Titans head coach was running the show. The next, he was sent flying after the side judge steamrolled him.

Vrabel addressed the incident during his Thursday press conference, and more than anything, the coach said he’s a bit “embarrassed” by what transpired.

“That’s why I get up so early in the morning to go and get in the weight room, so when you get illegally blocked in the back like I did, it doesn’t hurt,” Vrabel joked. “I didn’t go to the ground, he didn’t knock me down. Eugene can run and he’s big and he’s fast and I was just embarrassed because if I get a penalty, the players — after all this stuff I tell them and all this crap I talk to them about penalties and being disciplined and keeping your composure — and here I am halfway on the field looking up at the play on the Jumbotron.

“You know, the get-back coach gotta do a better job, I gotta do a better job at getting the hell out of the way, but I showed the team this morning because I knew they were going to laugh at me anyway, so I figured I might as well show them first.” 

As Vrabel noted in his remarks, he showed Titans players footage of what happened. Titans tackle Taylor Lewan had some thoughts on it, and essentially threw Vrabel under the bus.

Thankfully, both Vrabel and Hall walked away from the collision relatively unscathed, save for the coach left feeling a bit awkward over the incident.