Jim Wyatt, Senior Writer/Editor, TitansOnline.com
The Titans moved up to 72nd overall to select Western Kentucky receiver Taywan Taylor in the third round of Friday night’s NFL Draft.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. –The Titans added another weapon for quarterback Marcus Mariota, and he’s ready to do his part.
In the third round of Friday night’s NFL Draft, the Titans moved up to select Western Kentucky receiver Taywan Taylor.
A 6-foot-1, 195-pounder, Taylor was a playmaker for the Hilltoppers, and he’ll look to do the same for the Titans.
“I can’t even put it into words,” Taylor said. “I am still trying to soak it all in. I feel so blessed and so grateful to be a part of the Titans organization, great fans, great city, great everything. I am just ready to go to work.
“I am just so happy to be close to home, being able to play in front of my family and friends. It can’t get any better than this.”
On Thursday night, the Titans selected Western Michigan receiver Corey Davis with the fifth overall pick of the draft.
“Me and Corey, we are definitely looking to do great things,” Taylor said. “We have both worked so hard to get to this point. With us being receivers, we are automatically going to be brothers and be ready to work with the same goal, and that’s to win a Super Bowl.”
Taylor was incredibly productive at Western Kentucky.
He hauled in 253 passes for 4,234 yards and 41 touchdowns for the Hilltoppers. He caught a school-record 98 passes for 1,730 yards and 17 touchdowns in 2016. Taylor posted nine games with at least 100 yards receiving, second-most nationally.
His 1,730 receiving yards ranked No.3 nationally, and his 98 catches were third most. His 17.6-yard per catch average was the highest in the nation among receivers with at least 75 catches.
It earned him trips to the Senior Bowl and the NFL Combine, where he was able to improve his draft stock. Taylor had the fastest 3-cone time of any receiver at the combine, and the same time as Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey (6.57). The 3-cone drill demonstrates quickness, and change of direction.
“He’s had a ton of production,” Titans general manager Jon Robinson said of Taylor. “He’s really good with the ball in his hands. He can play inside receiver, he can play outside receiver. He visited here and I had a really good meeting with him. He felt comfortable with us and we felt comfortable with him.”
Taylor said he’s looking forward to catching passes from Mariota.
The Titans moved up to 72nd overall to select Taylor, and surrendered pick No.83 (third round) as well as No.124 (4th round) to the Patriots. The team received picks 72 and 200 from New England.
In addition to the Titans, Taylor visited the Rams, Cardinals, Seahawks, Lions and Eagles, among others.
“My new quarterback, I can’t put that into words either,’’ Taylor said. “To get to play with a guy like that, it doesn’t get any better than to play with a quarterback like Marcus. And I know I am going to come in and learn Day One. He is going to take me under his wing and he is going to expect nothing but the best from me.”