When the Tennessee Titans are on the clock to make the sixteenth overall selection in this year’s draft, fifteen quality prospects will be off the board. Given that the Titans’ primary needs are defensive end and cornerback, it’s an interesting exercise to see which ones might be selected with the first fifteen picks and which ones may remain for the Titans to choose from.
The first five teams to draft — the Rams, Lions, Bucs, Redskins and Chiefs — all have more urgent needs than DE or CB and are likely to select Bradford, Suh, McCoy, Okung and Berry, in some order.
Moving on, we look at the needs of the teams who are scheduled to select from picks six through fifteen. Things will start to get interesting for Titans fans when the Seahawks select with the sixth pick.
6. Seattle’s needs are CB, OT, DE and FS. They also pick at #14 and could possibly take both a corner and a DE with those picks. However, I strongly suspect they’ll take an OT with one of them. The Seahawks also need a playmaker and some mock drafts have them taking either WR Dez Bryant or RB C.J. Spiller with one of their first-round picks. Root for Seattle to pick a tackle and a playmaker.
7. Cleveland’s needs are CB, FS, SS and 3-4 DE. I believe the Browns will take CB Joe Haden unless Eric Berry has somehow fallen to this spot. Titans fans hope they will go with a 3-4 DE.
8. Oakland’s needs are O-line, WR and ILB. They don’t need a DE or CB but there’s no telling what Al Davis might do.
9. Buffalo needs a QB, WR and a NT for their new 3-4 defense. The Bills’ pick shouldn’t conflict with the Titans’ needs.
10. Jacksonville needs help in the secondary and could select S/CB Earl Thomas. This could affect the Titans if they view Thomas as a corner.
11. Denver needs a C, ILB and G. I hope they go with an o-lineman just so that Rolando McClain will be available when the Giants are on the clock at #15. Besides MLB, the G-men have the same needs as the Titans at DE and CB.
12. Miami’s needs are FS, WR, 3-4 OLB and DT. They could throw a wrench into the Titans’ works by taking either Thomas (see Jacksonville) or Sergio Kindle. Many teams (including the Dolphins, perhaps?) think Kindle would be better as a 3-4 OLB. The Titans are looking at Kindle as a 4-3 DE.
13. San Francisco needs an OT, a CB and a 3-4 OLB. Besides this pick, they also select again at #17. They should almost certainly use one of their first-round picks on an OT. Hope for them to address tackle with this pick and wait until #17 for a CB or for a 3-4 OLB such as Kindle or Brandon Graham.
14. Seattle – see pick #6
15. The New York Giants’ needs are DE, CB and ILB. Root for the Broncos not to take McClain at #11 so the G-men can take him here.
Looking at the above team needs, the worst-case scenario for the Titans would be as follows (assuming no trades are made.)
Seattle takes DE Derrick Morgan at #6, Cleveland selects Haden at #7, the Jags take Thomas at #10 and Denver drafts McClain at #11. Miami then takes Kindle at #12, the 49ers go with Graham at #13, the Seahawks take CB Kyle Wilson at #14 and the Giants select DE Jason Pierre-Paul with the 15th selection.
If that worst-case scenario takes place, the Titans would have to select from the likes of DEs Everson Griffen or Carlos Dunlap, neither of whom I’m excited about. My personal wishlist and big board is as follows:
CB Joe Haden
DE Derrick Morgan
DE Brandon Graham
DE Sergio Kindle
CB Earl Thomas
CB Kyle Wilson
DE Jason Pierre-Paul
DE Everson Griffen
DE Carlos Dunlap
That list is still very fluid — I need to watch a lot more tape and will doubtless change the order of my preferences during that process.
I will be very surprised if Haden is still on the board at #16 but will be delighted if Morgan or Graham is there.
Which players are on your wishlist and which of them do you believe will be available at #16?