The Tennessee Titans could be a very dangerous team in 2017.
Armed with a solid quarterback in Marcus Mariota and one of the best running games in the NFL with DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry, this is a team that needs a better wide receiving corps to become an elite offense this coming season. And with two first round picks and five picks in the first 114 selections, Tennessee could fill all their needs and then some. Losing Kendall Wright does not cripple this team, but it must get a quality set of hands in the draft.
The Tennessee Titans loaded up on defense in free agency, adding Johnathan Cyprien and Logan Ryan in the secondary, which leads me to believe the Titans will look to add more offense and a pass rusher in this draft.
The Titans reap the benefits of trading its first-round pick to the Los Angeles Rams last season and have two first round picks this year to continue the building process Jon Robinson, the team’s general manager, and Mike Mularkey, the team’s head coach have started. Consequently, all of this adds up to a great opportunity to get better in a hurry.
Here’s how I see the Tennessee Titans draft unfolding.
Round 1, Pick 5 – Corey Davis, Wide Receiver, Western Michigan
The Titans opt for the best wide receiver prospect in the Draft. Davis is regarded as a top-15 player, so even at this spot, he is an ideal fit for the Titans passing game.
Moreover, Davis is a big receiver (6-foot3, 209 pounds) who would immediately become the team’s top option in the passing game.
Round 1, Pick 18 – OJ Howard, Tight End, Alabama
Howard would fit perfectly in the Titans offense and suddenly, Mariota has more weapons at his disposal.
Todd McShay of ESPN.com had the Jacksonville Jaguars taking Howard with the fourth pick, which is preposterous. Be that as it may, Howard is a middle of the first-round type guy. In fact, his size, combined with Delanie Walker makes this position a major strength.
Round 3, Pick 69 – Demarcus Walker, Defensive End, FSU
Walker may fall to this spot, in which case, the Titans should scoop him up. Walker is big at 6-foot-4 and 280 pounds and could line up next to Jurrell Casey to give the Tennessee Titans yet another defensive stopper. Above all, his agility is welcomed as all teams need pass rushers.
In a year or two, I believe Walker will be one of the better pass rushers in the league.
Round 3, Pick 83 – Antonio Garcia, Tackle, Troy
Small college star who could a steal here for the Titans
At 6-foot-6 and 302 pounds, he could use more weight and still be effective. As a matter of fact, Garcia is poised in pass protection, easing out of his stance with an efficient speed and patiently waiting for the defender to come to him. Consequently, Garcia shows good quickness and balance to force defenders to run around him.
Round 4, Pick 114 – Trey Hendrickson, Defensive End, Florida International
Another small college find for Tennessee. May be a bit of a hybrid at 6-foot-4 and 266 pounds, but he can get to the quarterback.
The Conference USA player will not be asked to step in immediately and start, which is a good thing. In time, he could move into the starting lineup or work as a situational pass rusher.
Round 5, Pick 147 – Corn Elder, Cornerback, Miami
I like this kid.
Although he is a bit undersized, he still plays with effectiveness. Furthermore, Elder plays physically and with confidence, which is something he will need against taller, more agile pass catchers. He could fight for the nickel back position in came and will certainly help this team on special teams, potentially as a return specialist.
Round 7, Pick 208 – Jeremiah Ledbetter, Defensive Tackle, Arkansas
A project that could pan out. He needs some size (only 280 pounds) so he is not mauled at the line of scrimmage. Presently, Ledbetter would be coming into an ideal situation, learning from Jurrell Casey as he became part of the tackle rotation and given more playing time.
He benefitted from playing against top talent in the SEC.
He could start out on the practice squad.