TitansOnline.com Senior Writer and Editor Jim Wyatt tackles your questions in his latest installment of “Ask Jim.”
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The NFL Draft is now less than a week away.
Lots of questions need to be answered before the trip to Philadelphia.
Let’s get to it.
Ryan Kennedy from Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Question: Hey Jim. Going a little unconventional with my wish list for the draft. Do you see a scenario where the Titans go all out on offense in the first round considering they have added Logan Ryan and Jonathan Cyprien to the secondary? I LOVE the idea of grabbing Corey Davis #5 and #18 Christian McCaffery/John Ross in the first round. That would give Marcus Mariota some really great offensive weapons and they could pick up someone like Cam Sutton in the 3rd. That IMO would be a defensive nightmare to scheme for. Seems like every mock draft has them taking a CB or Safety in the first round and I probably would too had they not done anything in free agency to improve the secondary. Your thoughts?
Jim: Hey Ryan. I love the idea of adding playmakers, and I suspect that could happen early. Doubling up? Well, that will depend on which guys are there. It’s a deep draft for cornerbacks and safeties, so some good one could be had later. But if there’s a guy that Jon Robinson especially loves, he’ll snag him I’m sure.
Josh Bomar from Knoxville, Tennessee
Question: Hey Jim! I first want to thank you for all that you do for us Titans die-hards. I have two questions for you today:
1) Do you think it would be a good decision to select O.J. Howard with the first pick? I’ve heard talk of taking him with the second pick in the first round (18th) as well as reading similar theories in mock drafts, but his draft stock is climbing every day and I just don’t see him lasting that long. The reason this pick intrigues me so much is the fact that our G.M. Robinson is a Belichick protege, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see us trying to duplicate the dual tight end threat that the Patriots had in Gronk/Hernandez.
2) Why have the Titans never caught on in Knoxville?!?!?!? It’s such a huge football town. Everyone I know bleeds orange and white on Saturday, the markets are washed out by a sea of orange, cars come alive with Volunteer flags flapping in the wind as they zip down I-40, but for some reason the only baby blue I see in Knoxville on Sunday is the sky, if I’m lucky. I feel like a visiting fan in my own state. I’m honored that the Titans are one of the only four NFL teams whose state is represented in the team name rather than the city. The Nashville Titans just doesn’t have the same ring to it…
Jim: Hey Josh. I appreciate it. I like Howard. I’ve been impressed with him every step of the way, from watching him in college to the Senior Bowl to the NFL Combine to his Pro Day. I’m sure Robinson is intrigued. But I’ve seen Howard go as early as 4 to Jacksonville in some mock drafts, so there’s no guarantee he can he had. As for the Knoxville market, it’s natural it’s covered up in orange, fans supporting the state school and, for many, their alma mater. I know there’s Titans support in East Tennessee, because the caravan has been well supported there in recent years. It’s headed back there this year as well. Of course the team would welcome more, and I think winning should help. I’m putting you in charge of rounding up more Titans fans! 🙂
Braulio Cardenas from Saltillo, Mexico
Question: Hola Jim!! Thanks for keeping us well informed about our beloved Titans, and congratulations on such magnificent work. My two questions are: Who Draft’s prospects have visited the facilities, and if there is a NFL limit for that. Greetings from Mexico, and… ARRIBA LOS TITANS!!! :-))
Jim: Hey Braulio! Hola! A total of 28 players visited Saint Thomas Sports Park, not counting the local prospects. I can’t tell you which guys rolled through, though, for strategy reasons, and job security reasons. Jon Robinson doesn’t want them out there, and he wouldn’t appreciate me serving them up here. Some of the national reporters uncovered a few, but the majority of the visits have stayed quiet. I did see the itineraries, and the guys usually end up spending a lot of time during the visits, and usually stay overnight. They meet with coaches, the GM, etc. The prospect limit is 30.
David Haworth from Sweetwater, Tennessee
Question: Jim, what do you think about the Titans picking up Josh Dobbs, if he is still available, in the 4th round at #100 now that Mariota doesn’t need an experienced mentor on the roster? I would love to see Josh play behind a great offensive line once in his career.
Jim: Hey David. Well, it sounds like Dobbs will be long gone by then. The most recent forecasts I’ve seen for him list him as a second-rounder, and I’ve even seen first-round projections. Dobbs has been impressive during the offseason, and raised his stock. The Titans can’t get in the running for him that early, though.
Jarrod Williams from Lucedale, Mississippi
Question: Hey Jim I know everyone is full of ideas for the draft picks. But I’d like your opinion on this one. What if they traded back from 5 to the low teens. (And hopefully picking up a second round pick with that trade). Using the first pick on one of the big 3 WR’s. And then using the 18 pick on Jabrill Peppers. I’d love to see what Dick LeBeau could do with him! And since this draft is loaded with CBs. We could use that (hopeful) 2nd round pick to land a good dependable corner! Thanks for keeping us up to date with all the news and info! Keep up the great work!
Jim: Hey Jarrod. I like the theory. I like moving back, I like snagging a receiver, and I like getting the second-round pick. Will it be Peppers? Well, I think he’s a heck of a player, but not sure what the GM thinks about him. I know it’s a deep draft at the safety position, and scouts have been looking at a lot of them. And I’m on board with adding help at cornerback as well. Won’t be surprised here if a couple of corners are picked.
James Morrison from Amarillo, Texas
Question: Hey Jim. My question is with the release of McCourty have the guys looked into Revis? And if not will they? He had a bad season last year but he will be coming in healthy and in better shape. Maybe they can put him through a little test to make sure he won’t get burned deep this year? That would open us up a bit to focus on more pass rush and a receiver in the first round. Thanks.
Jim: Hey James. Can’t see this one happening.
Randy Howard from Kennett, Missouri
Question: Hey Jim, thank you for all of the updates. My question is less about the draft and more about veteran players. With the release of J-Mac, it’s clear that the cornerback position is going to be addressed one way or another. Is there any indication that the team is talking to, or even interested in, any teams about trading for a veteran cornerback? Malcolm Butler and Richard Sherman are the two the come to mind right off the bat. And, of what you know about Dick LeBeau’s scheme and Mike Mularkey/Jon Robinson idea on the ideal Titan player, do either of these players seem like a fit for our defense or our team? Thanks for everything Titan Jim!
Jim: Hey Randy. I think the draft will help determine a lot. There’s no doubt there’s a need, and the team has salary cap room. But as I mentioned earlier, this is a deep draft for corners. If the right guy/guys are added, then there’s not as much a need. If the team can’t land some of its targets either because someone else picks them or there’s another can’t-miss guy on the board, then things could be revisited after the draft. We’ll get some answers soon. I get the Sherman question a lot.
Randy Wrye from Lebanon, Tennessee
Question: Hey Jim. If the Titans stay at #5 do they take need or best player available?
Jim: Ideally the guy is both.
David Kennedy from Hytop, Alabama
Question: James: I had the pleasure of meeting Amy, and Mr. and Mrs. Adams, just after the Titans moved to Nashville. At this meeting we were playfully “harassed” by T-Rac! My question is: how many T-Racs are there? I believe the one we met was an Auburn fan!
Jim: Well David, the original T-Rac rocked the costume for 17 years. His replacement doesn’t speak much, but I’m pretty sure he’s not at Auburn fan. You’ll have to trust me on this one. 🙂
James Ellison from Nashville, Tennessee
Question: 5th pick- Jonathan Allen/Derek Barnett
18th pick- Corey Davis/Mike Williams
83rd pick- Cameron Sutton
100th pick- Bucky Hodges
125th pick- Anthony Walker Jr.
164th pick- Xavier Woods
214th pick- Joshua Dobbs
236th pick- Corey Levin
What do you think?
Jim: Well, James, I like the effort, and thought process. I’ll leave it in here to see if you hit on some of these….
Jeffrey Mayberry from Las Vegas
Question: With an obvious need at TE, but a proven star at the position, why does everyone assume the Titans draft one early? Why not take flier on a later round developmental project or a talented but injured guy like Jake Butt? Thanks for your time!
Jim: Hey Jeffrey. I think it’s because everyone has fallen in love with O.J. Howard, and I can’t blame them. But there’s no certainty he’ll last long. I feel pretty certain a tight end pick is coming. The team has done its homework on a bunch a guys during the process. I like Jake Butt, and I’m not sure what his timetable is for being ready. But not sure a “development project” is what the team is looking for since help is needed at the position.
Doug Gately from Notus, Idaho
Question: Jim, thanks for all you do in keeping us fans informed!! I look forward to your Q and A every week.
Any idea on where Kevin Dodd’s recovery is at? Just wondering if Dodd will be heathy and ready to go this season. We did not get to see much of him because of his injury. I was wondering where he was at in learning the defense? Thanks.
Jim: Hey Doug. I appreciate it. Dodd was a topic of conversation this week when the players returned. The team still has high expectations for Dodd, and he should be in a much better place mentally and physically this fall. He had a tough go last year, but having a year under his belt will help him. He’s in a good place as far as learning the defense, but he needs experience in the NFL.
Kari Rice from Spring Hill, TN
Question: Jim. What are the reasons for the Titans not to pick Corey Davis on their first draft selection? Mariota needs a top notch WR and Corey has something that other prospects just don’t have. P.J. Fletch saw something in Corey. Corey had a very tough life growing up. Corey is more than 100% dedicated and works so hard. He graduated from WMU and that says a lot for a kid who had a very sad home life. He has a well-spoken manner, and that says a lot about his professionalism as an athlete. In Corey’s own words: “I wouldn’t change anything that happened,” Corey said. “It made me who I am today. My childhood was rough, but I fought through it. Me and my brothers have come so far. Most kids would not be where they are today if they went through what we did. We have to keep fighting.” It would be a shame for the Titans to overlook Corey. I am partial to Corey for many reasons, but the Titans need to do what P.J. Fleck did. Thank you Jim.
Jim: Hey Kari. I like Davis. Impressed with his tape, and I liked what I heard from him at the combine. Unfortunately an ankle injury has kept him from working out. But if the GM loves him, he could be in play at 5, although a lot of the so-called “draft experts” aren’t sure there’s a receiver worthy of the fifth overall pick. If he doesn’t go 5, then he could go before the Titans are back in the clock at 18. Draft analyst Mike Mayock said he expects the top three receivers – Mike Williams, Corey Davis and John Ross – will all go between picks 10 and 23. Of course there’s a lot that can happen between now and then and on draft night, with trades, surprising picks, etc. Davis would be a great pick. But when?
Jesse Shepard from Belleville, New Jersey
Question: Hi Jim, I’m hoping that we pick Mike Williams @ #5. I realize that our secondary is sparse and needs immediate help, but I’m focused on developing Marcus and doing everything I can to make sure he takes another big step forward in yr3. I want to provide him with the best weapon available, and Williams will be long gone @ 18.
Jim: Hey Jesse. I get the sense fans are split on the big receivers – Williams and Davis. Kari is thinking something else (See above ^) …
Ronald Freund from McLEOD, MONTANA
Question: WHAT HAPPENED TO MARC MARIANI??? RELEASED, TO ANOTHER TEAM?? RETIRED? LOOKING FOR ANOTHER JOB??? HE IS FROM MONTANA WHERE I LIVE, HAVE FOLLOWED HIS PRO FOOTBALL FOR MANY YEARS. THANKS
Jim: I’LL STICK WITH THE CAPS. HE WASN’T RE-SIGNED. HE’S A FREE AGENT. MARC IS A GREAT GUY, AND A REAL PRO. BUT AFTER THE TEAM SIGNED RETURNER ERIC WEEMS LAST MONTH, HIS CHANCES OF COMING BACK PROBABLY AREN’T GOOD. HERE’S TO HOPING HE GETS ANOTHER CHANCE. HAVE A BIG DAY!
Marjorie Dench from Dorchester, Dorset, UK
Question: Hey Jim. We are coming from the UK to visit the region and as fans would love to be able to see the stadium. Do you offer tours at all?? thanks x.
Jim: Hey Marjorie. No tours are currently available, but several fans have asked so I think it’s being considered for the future. Stay tuned. Hope you have a great trip!