Plus I don't think the Stargazer was a science vessel.
Yes, it was, at least as much as Titan
is. It didn't really get spelled out on the show, but in Picard's bio in the original series bible, it was made clear that the Stargazer
's mission was one of long-term deep-space exploration -- pretty much the exact same mission profile as Titan
. And heck, it's right there in the name. Not to mention that TNG made it pretty clear that Picard did consider himself an explorer, and it didn't seem to be a recent change.