Feb 25, 2013; Indianapolis, IN, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks defensive back D.J. Swearinger makes a one handed catch during the NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Why The Titans Shouldn't Trade Down (Too Far)


When talking to friends and fans alike about the Titans draft position, many are left unenthused by the talent that will be left for the Titans at the 10th spot in the first round.  It is a widely held belief that this draft is less weighted at the top as far as elite players are concerned, but is very deep on second tier talent at many positions.  Why take Warmack at 10 when you can get Warford in the 2nd round?  Why take Vaccaro when you can wait and get Elam? And so on…

The prevailing opinion is that it would be best for the Titans to trade down if possible, mirror New England in drafting style, and stockpile picks for later in the draft and for future years.

The problem with that philosophy is the Titans need to win now, and head coach Mike Munchak is in a playoffs or bust scenario.  The team took a step back in his sophomore campaign and owner Bud Adams let his frustration be known publicly more than once.  The coaching staff and front office do not have the luxury of slow growth and development anymore.

The Titans have a handful of glaring needs and “holes” on the team at certain positions, and are lacking in depth at others.  Overall the team is very young, especially at certain position groups.  More and more rookies is not the answer here, especially concerning the low “hit” percentage in the draft of long term good players, even by the best of teams.

As much as we all love the draft, and it is the best way to reload and develop your team for the long haul, most of the players aren’t ready to come in and take over right off the bat.  Especially as you get deeper into the rounds.  Sure, there’s the occasional nugget or Cinderella story of the star player taken in the 5th round.  But more often than not, those guys play on special teams and provide depth.  They don’t get you to the polayoffs.  The Titans need their first round player to be an instant starter and difference maker.  They simply cannot afford to miss, or trade that pick.

If the 5-6 players the Titans covet are gone by it’s time for them to pick, I wouldn’t be opposed to them trading back a handful of spots and still get their next best guy.  I wouldn’t make any trade that didn’t acquire an extra 2nd rounder this year though, and it would be ridiculous to fall too far back in the draft and have a bunch of late round picks.

If anything the Titans need to be trading back up into the first round and second round in order to get as many top end guys as possible this year.  Signing 12 rookies this year to develop is not going to get Munchak and this team the wins they need.


You can argue with me on Twitter @gunnelsj

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  • http://www.facebook.com/shawn.eagle.58 Shawn Eagle

    I agree….it has to be a fine balance though and you also have to have the right people to dance with. Sometimes people act like you can just move up and down in the draft…like its easy…but sometimes you just get stuck and have to pick.

    • http://www.titansized.com/ Justin Stewart


  • http://www.titansized.com/ Justin Stewart

    The reason I like Vaccaro over Elam is Elam has a bit of a Griffin type tackling issue, though his is because he goes in for the big hit. More tackling issues in the secondary certainly doesn’t excite me.

  • http://www.facebook.com/shawn.eagle.58 Shawn Eagle

    Query….would you rather reach for someone at 10….or settle for a lesser talent in the 2nd??

    • http://www.titansized.com/ Justin Stewart

      What needs do you think the Titans will have left after free agency? My thinking that they’ll have grabbed O-line and a TE, maybe a DE. Which means if they get to the 10th pick and they’re happy with O-line and the top DEs are gone, I’d be fine with reaching for someone like Vaccaro. Long term solution at a spot (hopefully, it is a guess after all when it comes to drafting).

    • josh gunnels

      Speaking in general terms I guess I would rather “reach”.

      I honestly feel like if you have a guy that you love and strongly feel he can be a day one starter for your franchise then you take him, regardless of what position you’re at, or whether others say you could have gotten him ten spots later. If he’s your guy, then he’s your guy. Period.

      If you really don’t like anybody at the spot you’re picking, then sure, try and trade down a bit. But like you said, it’s never that easy.