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Even More Thoughts On The Titans’ 2019 Draft

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If you wanted more opinions on the Titans draft and can’t get enough, this is the article for you!

NFL: NFL Draft Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Since everyone else on the Music City Miracles staff has already posted their thoughts on the Titans’ draft, I figured I’d go ahead and do the very same. As the only MCM writer that’s from a different fanbase (Browns), I won’t say my experience as an outsider affects my opinions, but I wouldn’t blame you if you thought that.

Anyway, I thought the Titans had a solid draft. To a degree they address their biggest needs heading into the offseason, and the overall team looks the most talented it’s been in the Marcus Mariota era. Will that be enough to return to the playoffs? It should, especially if Mariota stays healthy, but these things aren’t given.

So with that said, the rest of this article will be dedicated to brief summarizations of my thoughts on each draft pick.

Round 1: Jeffery Simmons (19th overall pick, DE, Mississippi State)

Kentucky v Mississippi State Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images

I’ll be honest; I’m not quite as high on the Simmons pick as others in the Titans circle are. I feel like Jerry Tillery would’ve been a better interior lineman with this pick, as I see him to be the more consistent player as a pass rusher.

I will say that as a run stopper you can’t go wrong with the pick. Simmons had an astounding 18 tackles for loss in his final season with Mississippi State. I also love his insane burst and power off the line of scrimmage, that will certainly help strengthen an interior combo of Jurrell Casey and Simmons. Combining that with guys like Harold Landry and Cameron Wake makes for a much more intriguing Titans pass rush for a defense that was already good in 2018.

I do want to see more consistency from Simmons as a pass rusher. His game against Ole Miss is a perfect example of his potential as a pass rusher, though I feel like his play in this department is inconsistent. Probably not a popular opinion, but that’s how I feel. I definitely don’t despise the pick, and look forward to seeing what a healthy Simmons can do for the Titans defensive line.

Round 2: A.J. Brown (51st overall pick, WR, Ole Miss)

Auburn v Mississippi Photo by Michael Chang/Getty Images

Brown wasn’t my favorite receiver available with the 51st pick (I wanted J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, Miles Boykin, D.K. Metcalf and Kelvin Harmon over him), so him being the first Ole Miss WR taken off the board was surprising. However, I did enjoy Brown’s tape and like him as a prospect, so ultimately I like the pick. He’s a consistent route runner that also shows promise as a red zone threat, and does more than enough to separate down the field and create yards after the catch. His presence increases the versatility of the receiving corps’, something they badly needed.

Now, I’ve seen some Titans fans suggest Brown has a higher ceiling than Corey Davis, and I’m not entirely sure about that. Davis, as well as having much more professional experience, doesn’t get enough credit as a high quality all-around receiver. He can work underneath, intermediate and especially vertical, and possesses impressive ball skills and smooth breaks on his routes. That’s not to say Brown can’t get there, but I think fans are selling Davis a little short.

Round 3: Nate Davis (82nd overall pick, OG, Charlotte)

Charlotte v Tennessee Photo by Donald Page/Getty Images

Watching Nate Davis, the pick makes sense for Tennessee’s run heavy offense considering Davis came from a similar background with Charlotte. He’s an extremely athletic and powerful run blocker that’s capable of moving in space. He’s not quite as strong as a pass blocker, but he’s still solid in that area and I enjoy his quick first step after the snap.

Arguably the most important part of protecting a quarterback is having a strong interior offensive line, and it’s safe to say the Titans did not have that in 2018. But with the additions of the brilliant Roger Saffold and Davis, that should change in 2019.

Round 4: Armani Hooker (116th overall pick, safety, Iowa)

Iowa State v Iowa Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images

The addition of Amani Hooker gives the Titans safety corps some much needed depth, and this includes the starting tandem of Kevin Byard and Kenny Vaccaro. Hooker is a quick, versatile safety with impressive speed and solid coverage/tackling ability. I’m looking forward to the snaps he gets in his rookie season.

Round 5: D’Andre Walker (168th overall pick, OLB, Georgia)

Tennessee v Georgia Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

In the fifth round, Tennessee got their second pass rusher of the draft in OLB D’Andre Walker. This was a player they liked as they nearly took him in third round (allegedly). Walker was an unspectacular but solid player at Georgia, flashing quality plenty of times. And I expect that to be the case for him in his rookie season.

Needless to say, there’s been a nice increase in pass rushing depth for Tennessee.

Round 6: David Long Jr. (188th overall pick, ILB, West Virginia)

TCU v West Virginia Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images

The selection of David Long Jr. further solidifies the linebacking depth on display in Nashville. He was an extremely productive and versatile player at West Virginia, and if given a shot could very well be a 6th round gem.

Tennessee’s linebacking corps now includes David Long, Rashaan Evans, and Jayon Brown. Brown had a great 2018 season, and Evans finished strong himself. That’s not a bad group at all.

So what did you guys think of my assessments? Comment your thoughts below!