Titans Landscape Changes in a Matter of Days
It was an NFL fan’s Christmas Day on Thursday, the NFL Draft. As a Tennessee Titans fan, all you had to wonder about is what your team would do with their 26th overall pick. Although the way the Titans team looks after the three-day event is quite a change. So how did all this happen?
AJ Brown is Now a Philadelphia Eagle?
As the first round continued, I was texting my brother and was talking about who might fall to Tennessee and if I thought they would take them. As the Eagles Pick came up my brother sent me a message I didn’t think I would ever see. “ We are trading AJ to Philly,” I replied “what the…” As the trade details came out the Titans traded Brown to The Eagles for the 18th and 101st overall draft picks in the 2022 NFL Draft.
Treylon Burks the New AJ Brown?
Before I even had time to process that Tennessee just traded away their star WR, they were on the clock again. When the selection came in it was Treylon Burks, a wide receiver from Arkansas. Burks was who I have wanted since January. He has a lot of the same traits as Brown, he plays a lot like him. Burks has great breakaway speed and can play any receiver position that Tennessee asks him to play. He has massive hands and can run any route. His biggest problem is he needs to learn to use his speed to his advantage, he tends to just go all out all the time. So this will be something he will need to work on.
So after all the dust settled, Tennessee traded AJ Brown for Burks. I wanted Burks, but I don’t know if this is what I truly meant. At first, I was so mad at the front office for allowing such a talent to just walk away. Although a few days later I have seen that the Titans’ hand was forced, after Brown and his team shut off communication with that team about contract talks. I’ll miss Brown, but if you don’t wanna be here I won’t force you to stay. Burks has a bright future and I think could be the best receiver in this class. My overall grade for this pick and trade is an 85 out of 100.
Night Two Picks
Tennessee still owned the 26th overall selection, although they traded that pick to the New York Jets. The Jets traded the 35th, 69th, and 90th over picks for the Titan’s 26th, and 101st picks. This move gave Tennessee three picks on night two. With the 35th pick, the Titans took Roger McCreary, a defensive back from Auburn. This was a pick that wasn’t a need for Tennessee, but when a talent falls in your lap you gotta take it. McCreary was a top defender, who went up against some of the nation’s best receivers week in and week out. His biggest knock on him is he has short arms and is undersized at only 5’11″ I have projected to play inside. I grade this pick an 80 because we could have addressed other needs before they took McCreary, but overall a good pick.
With the 69th pick, Tennessee took Nicholas Petit-Frere, a Tackle from Ohio State. The dude is a big guy at 6’5″, 315 lbs, but he doesn’t move like a player of that size. He has incredibly quick feet. Petit-Frere played both Tackle positions while at Ohio State, so he can play either one of those for the Titans. His only downside is his core strength. He needs to get stronger to compete with some of the best and most powerful edge rushers in this league. Overall Petit-Frere should push for a starting job. I grade this pick an 85 due to the value of this pick.
The Future is Here
The Titans sent pick 90 and pick 169 to the Las Vegas Raiders for the 86th overall pick. With that pick, the Titans selected Malik Willis, a quarterback from Liberty University. This pick is the pick of the draft, Willis was projected by most to be a 1st round pick. So to get him at 86 is amazing. Willis has a big arm and so much speed he could and should be their future franchise QB. Willis has some problems with relying on his legs too much at times. He needs to learn to be a true QB and not just be an athlete in this league. He can do this all while sitting behind Ryan Tannehill. There shouldn’t be any pressure for Willis to start until 2023. I grade this pick a 99, the only reason it isn’t a 100 is that QB wasn’t a need, but I get why they made this pick
Day 3 Picks
The Titans started Day 3 by taking Hassan Haskins, running back from Michigan with the 131st pick. Haskins is a powerful running back who shows flashes of Derrick Henry. He also takes care of the ball, he didn’t have a fumble while at Michigan. Now Haskins doesn’t have breakaway speed, but he does run hard and has a nose for the end zone. Give him some time with the king and he will be fine. Henry can finally take a few snaps off a game to not get injured, thanks to Haskins. I grade this pick an 85, due to it not being a need.
At pick 143, the Titans finally get Tannehill a safety blanket with the selection of Chigoziem Okonkwo, a tight end from Maryland. Okonkwo is a QB’s dream. He is quick and has great hands. He can take a 10-yard pass to the house in the blink of an eye. Now Okonkwo needs to learn to run more long routes; he only ran short routes. So he will need to learn to do this if he wants to be their starter going forward. I grade this pick a 90, a great pick by Jon Robinson.
The Titans picked again at 163 when they selected Kyle Phillips, a wide receiver from UCLA. Phillips is a speedster that is projected to be a returner and special teams gunner. He lacks the size and technique to be anything more at this time. Could he develop into the next Wes Welker? Who knows, maybe. But for now, I grade this pick an 82 for the value you get with the pick.
They Took a Flyer on a Player Picks
The Titans made two 6th-round picks, the first coming at the 204th pick. With this pick, Tennessee took Theo Jackson, a defensive back from Tennessee. Being a Tennessee fan I saw a lot of Jackson. Jackson is a fast player who plays his role; the role he played at Tennessee was any position in the secondary. He didn’t get beat a whole lot. The biggest problem with Jackson is he isn’t great at any position. So where does he fit in? He is a fringe-depth guy. I’ll give it an 83.
Tennessee made its final selection at 219 when they selected Chance Campbell, linebacker from Ole Miss. Campbell is a hard working player who is a tackler. Who lacks top-end speed. I see Campbell as a camp body. They have a very deep linebacker unit that will be hard to crack. I’ll grade this one 76.
So How Do They Feel After a Wild Few Days
I have gone over the Tennessee Titans’ draft. And it seems like the Titans are preparing for the future, it seems that if these picks hit the future is bright. I am sad that they had to trade Brown. But they didn’t get a lot of value from the trade. I can’t wait to see what Robinson and the Titans do in the coming weeks, I just have a feeling they aren’t done yet. So with all my grades added together, I have this draft averaged out as an 85, which I think is a great draft class.