It just makes sense. When the Tennessee Titans make their selection with the 20th pick of the 2012 defensive draft, there’s a very high possibility that the best defensive ends will be off the board, leaving the Titans an option to risk their pick on a defensive end that could be a huge bust (ie Whitney Mercilus) or spend it on a more sure pick, such as Mark Barron.
One way to take away the temptation to risk their first round pick on a DE is to grab a proven veteran via free agency.
The Colts DE Robert Mathis a sure as a thing gets, as for players who will hit free agency. The Colts have a mess of a cap and Mathis will most likely become an unfortunate victim of circumstances.
Or will he?
Coming to Tennessee could be a great move for Mathis. The Titans have two special young DT in Jurrell Casey and Karl Klug. Putting Mathis next to those two budding stars could really benefit his production, not that it’s lacking.
Since Mathis entered the league in 2003 his lowest sack total was 3.5 sacks, which was his rookie year. Since the his lowest record was seven sacks, which was in 2007. He recorded 9.5 sacks this last year to go along with his three forced fumbles and three fumbles recovered. Mathis has been a solid DE for nine years and turns 31 this Sunday.
Lets just look at his career totals: 395 tackles, 83.5 sacks, 39 FF, and 14 FR. That’s an impressive resume.
The one issue with bringing him is that he doesn’t fit the profile Jerry Gray likes in his defensive ends, as Mathis comes in at 6’2″, 245 lbs. Basically, he’s the size of a linebacker, not a defensive end. You’d hope they’d look past that, as obviously Mathis has had a very successful career despite his smaller stature.
With the lack of really promising defensive ends at the top end of this draft, the Titans would be smart to bring in a starter via free agency and Mathis is both affordable and service able for at least two to three more years.
Go get ’em, boys.
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