2012 NFL Mock Draft: The Titans and Whitney Mercilus

BLOOMINGTON, IN - OCTOBER 08: Dusty Kiel #8 of the Indiana Hoosiers attempts a pass while defended by Whitney Mercilus #85 of the Illinois Illini during the game at Memorial Stadium on October 8, 2011 in Bloomington, Indiana. Illinois won 41-20. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

NFL Draft Countdown has put out their first mock draft of the season. This is one of my favorite draft sites. They have the Titans taking Whitney Mercilus (pronounced merciless according to Mel Kiper), DE, Illinois. Here is what they had to say about the pick:

Even upon close examination of the Titans depth chart it’s difficult to pinpoint a ton of glaring holes. With that said there are a number of areas where they could stand to upgrade, one of which is defensive end. The cupboard certainly isn’t bare in Tennessee, but they lack a true impact pass rusher at the position and only one team finished with fewer sacks this past season. After entering the year with just two career sacks, Whitney Mercilus of Illinois came through with an outstanding junior campaign and finished the season with 22.5 tackles for a loss and 16.0 sacks. Whitney Mercilus | Illinois Fighting Illini However, despite that impressive production Mercilus isn’t particularly explosive or fluid and his instincts are questionable. With that said this class is lacking when it comes to true 4-3 defensive ends, especially at the top, so Mercilus could get pushed up draft boards a bit. The Titans could opt for some interior offensive line help in the form of Stanford OG David DeCastro and depending on what happens in free agency either cornerback or safety could be a distinct possibility at this point as well.

That is hardly a glowing recommendation there. I really don't want to see the Titans take a guy who has been "pushed up draft boards because of the lack of quality guys."

In this scenario, it would be nice to see them pull the trigger on Michael Floyd, or even Alfonzo Dennard if they let Cortland Finnegan walk.

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