Before we go further, let's set the perimiters for our second TitanRedZone mock draft 2.0 of who we are taking with the eight picks the Tennessee Titans hold in the 2016 draft.
First we are operating with the roster as it stands now and before there are any free-agent additions. Those additions will certainly change our mock drafts in the future. We are filling needs first in most cases, unless of course there is someone who is just too good to pass up.
That makes the first round selection the most difficult of them all because the Titans have so many needs and with the entire draft class at their disposal. They could go several different directions and none would be considered bad decisions in light of the players talents and the Titans needs.
Four players made the cut for us in the first round, and one might surprise you.
Ole Miss offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil, Florida State corner/safety Jalen Ramsey, Ohio State defensive lineman Joey Bosa and his former Buckeye teammate, who transfered to Eastern Kentucky Noah Spence were the four players who were in contention for the Titans in our first round.
Most would say that Spence because of his off-field issues is a major stretch for the top overall pick, and we argee. However, the Titans could trade down from the top spot to add more picks, meaning that Spence, whose talent as a pass rusher off the edge could become an option depending on where they land in the trade down, and which players are still on the board.
Spence is more of a luxury pick that a desperate need, but based on what the Broncos did with two dominante edge rushers, the Titans having Spence wouldn't be all together bad.
Still we can't in good conscience at this point assume a trade and make Spence the pick. His elimnation leaves us with three potential candidates for the top pick
Without further delay, here are our eight selections.
1) OT- LAREMY TUNSIL, Ole Miss
This one is tough because I absolutely love Jalen Ramsey and what he brings to the defense with his versatility and play-making ability. He is also a Nashville area product and has said publicly he would love to be a Titans. That's the kind of player I want, but given the dire need to protect the franchise quarterback Marcus Mariota, Tunsil must be the pick to fill the biggest need.
If the Titans can fix the o-line in free-agency then expect this pick to change, and of course, in a trade down we love Ramsey.
2) WR BRAXTON MILLER, Ohio State
This one might be a surprise, but based on his performance at the Senior Bowl, Miller has blown up draft boards with some projecting him into the first round. He will likely ace the drills in Indy and show out at his pro-day.
His athletic ability is without question, and his speed is game changing. He is raw at the postion to be sure, but he showed he has the work ethic and want to suceed mentality to go along with the physical gifts, which makes him a soild second round talent in our minds, and a potential game changer to boot.
Call me crazy, but that's where I'm going in the second.
3) S JEREMY CASH, Duke
Cash was our second round pick in the first mock, but he has slipped some since the Senior Bowl. not necessarily by his own fault. Him slipping to the top of the third round is a blessing if it happens and the Titans grabbed Miller in the second. He is a smart, physical safety who could fill the void left by the release of Michael Griffin last week.
Clemson product Jayron Kearse, the nephew of Jevon is also a safety and has slipped of late after a lack-luster performance in the national championship game, and he too could be an option of his fall to the third round as being projected at the moment occurs.
4) RB KENYAN DRAKE, Alabama
Drake is another electric type playmaker who can run out of the backfield, catch out of the backfield and slot and provide an explosive option in the return game. He is a bigger version of Dexter McCluster who would be a better fit running between the tackles than McCluster.
Also adding his game changing speed along with Miller would add two dynamic athletes to go along with Delanie Walker, Kendall Wright and Dorial Green-Beckham to give Mariota a serious group of offensive weapons to work and grown with as a unit.
5) OLB ERIC STRIKER, Oklahoma
Stricker is an undersized linebacker who possesses great speed and tenacity. He could potentially play inside in some situations while moving to the edge as a pass rusher on third-downs. His ability would be an intersting piece for Dick LeBeau to play with along with Derrick Morgan and Brian Orakpo on passing downs with the ability to cover a tight end down field at the same time.
6) CB WILL REDMOND, Mississippi State
Redmond is a Memphis product, and has good size (6'0" 185) and speed. His play improved in his senior season and he played against top competition, Redmond is not ready to be an NFL starter, but could be a good addition as a third corner behind Jason McCourty and Perrish Cox.
The Titans would be well served to add a veteran corner in free agency and eliminate the need for any rookie not named Jalen Ramsey to be on the field in a vital role early on in the season.
6) WR MALCOLM MITCHELL, Georgia
I love Mitchell, and while his stock improved some at the Senior Bowl, he is still a sixth round talent, but could blow past that at the combine. However, as it stand today he is here in the sixth and a Titan,
He has speed and great hands along with being a smart, mature player who would add physical ability and depth to the receiver group. long with Miller, Wright, Green-Beckham, Justin Hunter and Harry Douglas in a six man receiving corps.
7) OT ALEX LEWIS, Nebraska
Lewis is long, (6'5" 305) and has been rising since his performance in the Shrine Game. He is raw but he is talented, physical and has a nasty streak that reminds me of former Titans tackle David Stewart. He is a project, but the Titans need offensive line help and Lewis could grow into an eventual starter and a quality back-up in the mean time.
There it is, the TitanRedZone mock draft 2.0. While okc drafts are certainly open for debate, we feel that we have addressed vital needs and also added talent and playmakers at the same time.