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With the 16th Selection in the 1999 NFL Draft the Tennesssee Titans Select

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Jevon Kearse DE University of Florida

Here is the entire Titans draft from 1999:

1st Round

Pick #16 Jevon Kearse DE

2nd Round

Pick #52 John Thornton DT

3rd Round

Pick #81 Zach Piller G

4th Round

Pick #114 Brad Ware
Pick #117 Donald Mitchell CB

5th Round

Pick #151 Kevin Daft QB

6th Round

Pick #186 Darran Hall WR

7th Round

Pick #222 Phil Glover LB

This was another heavy QB draft with all of the first 3 picks being QB's.  Tim Couch went first to the Browns, Donovan McNabb went 2nd to the Eagles and Akili Smith went 3rd to the Bengals.

Jevon Kearse was obviously a very good pick for the Titans.  He had 14.5 sacks in his rookie year, the all-time rookie record, and was the sparkplug of a very good Titans defense in 1999 and 2000.  He was injured a lot while he was here but while on the field he opened up a lot of things for the defense because teams had to double team him whenever they were going to pass.  He is currently a member of the Philadelphia Eagles but is out for the year with a torn ACL.

John Thornton played in all 16 games for the Titans in 1999, 2000 and 2002.  He was a solid player.  3rd round pick Zach Piler has been a mainstay on the Titans line since 2000.  The rest of the draft was bad.  I am not sure that Brad Ware every actually played in the NFL (that is why you don't take players from Auburn), Donald Mitchell made a minimal contribution to the franchise, Kevin Daft, though loved by some, was only on the roster for 2 years and the other 2 guys were never heard from.

This tends to be a trend with Titans drafts.  2-3 guys that are good players and then 3-4 who are non-factors.  That is not the recipe for success in the NFL.  In the salary cap era it is all about building your team through the draft.  You are going to lose players to Free Agency and you need to have younger, cheaper players to step in when the high priced guys leave.  The 1999 draft is a great example.  The Titans lost Kearse and Thornton to free agency.  You can't expect guys you draft to be on your team forever and if they go on to have success somewhere else you can feel good about the pick.  Some guys just price themselves too high as Kearse did.  The Titans have had to many draft picks in recent years that never made it in the NFL.

Grade C.