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NFL free agency 2018: Will the Titans pursue Jerick McKinnon?

It’s something Jon Robinson should at least kick the tires on....

NFL: NFC Divisional Playoff-New Orleans Saints at Minnesota Vikings Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

We know that one of the Tennessee Titans biggest needs heading into this offseason is a running back to compliment Derrick Henry. Mel Kiper had them taking a running back at pick #25 in his latest mock draft earlier today. I am anti-running back in the first round.

Marc Sessler of wrote a post earlier today where he made a connection with every AFC team to a player that is slated to hit free agency on March 14th. The player he paired with the Titans is Minnesota Vikings’ running back Jerick McKinnon. That connection makes a lot of sense because McKinnon excels in catching the ball out of the backfield. He caught 51 passes for 421 yards and 2 touchdowns in 2017.

It was reported earlier this offseason that McKinnon wanted to go to a team that would allow him to be the feature back. The Titans don’t fit that criteria, but there aren’t many NFL teams that feature a back anymore. McKinnon will probably find that to be a tough market.

I would be all in on a McKinnon signing for the right price. He would allow the Titans to be a screen team for the first time in the history of the franchise. Just look back to what Todd Gurley and the Los Angeles Rams did to the Titans in the screen game. That will give you a window into how Matt LaFleur would use a back like McKinnon.

Here were Sessler’s comments on the McKinnon-Titans connection:

The Titans require edge-rushing help, but I’d expect that to come through the draft. Assuming DeMarco Murray is history, I’m giving Tennessee a player to pair with Derrick Henry. McKinnon runs tough for his size and operates as a major asset in the passing game. He’d give this attack a burst of much-needed speed.

P.S.: The Titans are dead to me if they don’t also find a backup quarterback better than Matt Cassel.

I agree 100% with the P.S. there.