|With several pending prominent free agents, the Titans' top priority may be re-signing TE Jared Cook. (US Presswire)|
Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams' patience is wearing thin . Of his team's 10 defeats in 2012, six came by three touchdowns or more. The Titans allowed a franchise-record 471 points and finished the season ranked 26th on offense.
Moving forward, the Titans could use veteran help. At the start of the 2012 season, the Titans were the 10th youngest team in the league (average age of 25.8 years old).
Free agents who must be signed:
• TE Jared Cook -- At 6-5, 248 pounds, Cook is one of the most athletic tight ends in the league, as his sprawling 18-yard touchdown vs. the Colts in Week 14 illustrated. It isn't a coincidence that Tennessee struggled to move the ball after Cook suffered a season-ending torn rotator cuff in Indianapolis. Cook considers himself a top 10 tight end and wants to be paid accordingly.
• K Rob Bironas -- Although Bironas didn't meet the high standards he set for himself in 2012, he has been remarkably consistent in his eight-year career. Bironas entered the 2012 season ranked third in NFL history in field goal accuracy with an 86.3 percent conversion rate. At 34, Bironas can still kick at a high level for several more years.
• C Fernando Velasco -- The three-year veteran is a heady, agile lineman who is coming off the best season of his pro career. Having started all 16 games in 2012, Velasco is the Titans' top swing lineman on the interior. The former Georgia Bulldog can remain at center where he started 14 games, or be moved to guard, where he started twice.
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Positions needing improvement:
• Safety -- There's a chance both starting safeties -- Michael Griffin and Jordan Babineaux -- could be elsewhere in 2013. While both demonstrated play-making abilities at times, they were nanoseconds late in coverage too often. The Titans need a hard-hitting veteran who can set the tone for the secondary.
• Interior Offensive Line -- All three starting spots on the inside could be up for grabs. Starting C Eugene Amano (triceps) missed the season, RG Leroy Harris is dealing with persistent pain in his knees and LG Steve Hutchinson could be considering retirement. Tennessee could use a young mauler with a mean streak.
• Defensive End -- The Titans need depth beyond starters Kamerion Wimbley and Derrick Morgan. Rookie DE Scott Solomon showed promise, while DLs Keyunta Dawson and Leger Douzable are expected to return from season-ending injuries. It's a need that should be addressed early in the NFL Draft.
For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the Tennessee Titans, follow Matt Rybaltowski @CBSTitans.