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Mel Kiper Jr. 2020 NFL Mock Draft: Titans bolster defense

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NCAA Football: Purdue at Penn State John Jones-USA TODAY Sports

Mel Kiper Jr. is back this morning with version four of his mock draft, going two full rounds. The Tennessee Titans have a few clear needs, and Kiper knocked two of them out during this run.

The ESPN analyst projected Penn State pass rusher Yetur Gross-Matos at pick No. 29.

Tennessee added Vic Beasley Jr. on a one-year deal in free agency, but it should still take a close look at the edge rushers at the end of Round 1. Gross-Matos had a steady but unspectacular 2019 season, putting up 15 tackles for loss with 9.5 sacks. He would likely play end in the Titans’ 3-4 defense, but he could play outside linebacker, too.

The Titans will absolutely need another body to add to the edge rotation this year. They’ve bet on Vic Beasley to give them big snaps during the 2020 season, along with Harold Landry and Kamalei Correa. Adding the 6-5, 265 pound edge rusher would give them a versatile piece to mold for the future.

Kiper comes back in round two to address the secondary, projecting Alabama cornerback Trevon Diggs to the Titans at No. 61.

Logan Ryan is still unsigned, and Tennessee could use an injection of talent at the cornerback spot. Diggs, a converted wide receiver and brother of new Bills wideout Stefon Diggs, is still raw, but he has the tools to be an NFL starter. According to ESPN Stats & Info, Diggs allowed just 30% of passes to be completed when he was the primary defender in 2019, the third-lowest percentage in the FBS.

As Kiper pointed out, Ryan is still on the open market. LeShaun Sims has already signed in Cincinnati, so the Titans are missing some secondary depth. Diggs certainly bolsters that and could offer a solution if Jon Robinson choses to shed Malcolm Butler’s contract after this season.

A second running back and right tackle are the glaring needs that would need to be addressed later after going defense with the first two picks.

What are your thoughts on this haul?