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2011 Tennessee Titans first-round pick: Early Mock drafts

We’re still a few months away from the 2011 NFL Draft, but that hasn’t stopped prognosticators from getting an early start on trying to predict what each team will do with their first round selections.

That’s right, folks, the onslaught of mock drafts that we’ll be bombarded with over the course of the next few months has begun. Mock drafters have initated the process of trying to determine, based on their perception of each team’s needs, how the first round of the 2011 NFL Draft will unfold.

Let’s take an early look at what mock drafters have to say about the course the Titans should take with their 8th overall, first round selection.

For your viewing pleasure, here are ten mock drafters’ opinions of what the Titans will do with their first-round pick:

(Disclaimer: Over the next few months, expect these opinions (and others) to change approximately a million times before April’s Draft.)

CBS Sports:
Rob Rang- QB Cam Newton, Chad Reuter- DE Robert Quinn

Walter Football: DE Aldon Smith

NFL Fan House: DT Marcel Dareus

Sports Illustrated/CNN: DE Aldon Smith

New NFL Draft: QB Cam Newton

NFL Draft Dog: QB Jake Locker 

FF Tool Box: QB Cam Newton

Draft Season: QB Jake Locker 

Great Blue North Report: CB Patrick Peterson 

Draft Shack: QB Cam Newton    

My take

Considering the team’s decision to jettison Vince Young, there’s no surprise that the majority of the mock drafters expect the Titans to draft a signal-caller with pick #8. Cam Newton appears to be the early popular choice, and he’s a guy we’ve already discussed as a possibility. However, don’t count out quarterbacks such as Jake Locker (who was selected twice by the aforementioned armchair general managers) Ryan Mallett and Blaine Gabbert.

Outside of the QB position, some feel as though the Titans should venture towards addressing the defensive side of the football with their first-rounder. I can’t say that I disagree with that viewpoint, considering the struggles Chuck Cecil’s unit experienced, especially during the dreadful second half of the 2010 campaign.

DT Marcel Dareus would be a nice choice. Auburn’s Nick Fairley, who dominated last Monday’s National Championship game, would be an even better selection but I doubt if he’s still around at selection #8.

It’s interesting to see some believe that the Titans will go with a defensive end with their first rounder. Personally, I think a run-stuffing DT is a bigger need, especially considering the potential of 2010 first-rounder, Derrick Morgan, if he’s able to come back from last year’s season-ending knee injury.

Of the mock drafts that I posted, one predicts that a CB will be selected but considering the presence of veteran Cortland Finnegan and up-and-coming youngsters Jason McCourty and Alterron “Velcro” Verner, I’m not a fan of the Titans drafting a CB that high.

Any opinions regarding what some mock drafters are saying about who the Titans will select with their first-rounder?

You know the routine…post your greatly appreciated thoughts below.