Mike Fanelli | February 25th, 2020
The Tennessee Titans’ 2019 season was a ride of ups and downs. The team started the season 2-4 before Mike Vrabel made a change at quarterback. He benched Marcus Mariota for offseason addition Ryan Tannehill. The team finished the season 7-3 and claimed the final AFC Wild Card spot with a 9-7 record. Their season ended in the AFC Conference Championship game, losing the eventual Super Bowl champions Kansas City Chiefs 35-24.
Entering the offseason, the Titans have two big decisions to make. Do they re-sign Tannehill and star running back Derrick Henry or not? For the sake of this mock draft, I’m going to assume both guys are back for the 2020 season. The Titans don’t have a fourth-round pick as they dealt it away last offseason for Tannehill (a trade they would happily make again). In total, the Titans are projected to have six draft picks this year.
To help with this mock draft, I used the Fanspeak mock draft simulator.
Make sure to check out all of our other NFL team mock drafts here.
Round 1, Pick 29: Austin Jackson, OT, USC
Last offseason, the Titans declined starting right tackle Jack Conklin‘s fifth-year option. He had a decent 2019 season but the Titans could decide against giving him a long term deal. If Conklin leaves, the Titans must find a new starting right tackle, especially since backup swing tackle Dennis Kelly is also an upcoming free agent. While Jackson is a tad raw, he can start as a rookie. A duo of Jackson and Taylor Lewan would keep Tannehill or whoever is playing quarterback upright for the next several years.
Round 2, Pick 61: Curtis Weaver, EDGE, Boise State
While the Titans had 43 sacks as a team last season, Harold Landry was the only player on the team with more than five sacks. Cameron Wake was signed last offseason but he was a bust, registering just 2.5 sacks. He will likely be cut this offseason, while Kamalei Correa (who had five sacks last year) is an upcoming free agent. Weaver was close to unstoppable during his time at Boise State, registering at least 9.5 sacks in each of his three seasons. He averaged 0.85 sacks per game in college and pairing him with Landry should make quarterbacks in the AFC South worry.
Round 3, Pick 93: Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor
Last year’s second-round pick A.J. Brown had a great rookie season and looks like a future star in the making. However, former top-five pick, Corey Davis has been bust and will likely have his fifth-year option declined later this offseason. Adam Humphries had a solid first season in Tennessee but he is a slot receiver only. Mims had a great week down at the Senior Bowl and looks like a lock to be a day two pick. With Davis potentially out the door in a year, Mims will have plenty of opportunities to make several crazy catches for the Titans.
HOW?! 😱@BUFootball's Denzel Mims catches one out of this WORLD. pic.twitter.com/E2kBzv9DH9— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) October 6, 2018
Round 5, Pick 174: Levonta Taylor, CB, Florida State
Starting cornerback Logan Ryan is an upcoming free agent and while the team should do everything to re-sign him, he could get too expensive. If Ryan leaves, the cornerback position will become a bigger priority. However, even if Ryan is retained, Adoree’ Jackson is entering the fourth year of his rookie deal while Malcolm Butler has an easy out in his contract after the 2020 season that the Titans will take advantage of. Furthermore, two of the Titans’ reserve cornerbacks, Tramaine Brock and LeShaun Sims, are both upcoming free agents so adding depth at the position is critical. Given their cornerback situation, Taylor could play limited snaps as a rookie but then take over as a starter in 2021.
Round 6, Pick 208: Shaquille Quarterman, LB, Miami
The Titans are set at starting linebacker with Rashaan Evans and Jayon Brown. However, top backup Wesley Woodyard is an upcoming free agent. Last year, the Titans spent a sixth-round pick on David Long Jr. but adding another linebacker would be a smart move. With Brown entering the last year of his deal, the Titans need to add some depth at linebacker to protect them if he leaves next offseason.
Round 7, Pick 244: J.J. Taylor, RB, Arizona
If they don’t re-sign Henry and don’t replace him in free agency, the Titans will need to put a high priority on drafting a back early. However, with Henry back, Dion Lewis could be a cap casualty. The Titans can save a little over $4 million dollars by cutting him. If he is cut, Taylor would be an excellent replacement. Despite his smaller frame, Taylor can lower his helmet and create yards after contact. Adding Taylor on the cheap and using the $4 million dollars by cutting Lewis to re-sign Henry would be an excellent move for the Titans.
If he declares, Arizona RB J.J. Taylor is going Day 3 and is going to outplay his draft position. An absolute relentless competitor. pic.twitter.com/sNbdAxDw0k— Gavino Borquez (@GavinoBorquez) November 7, 2019
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