Tennessee Titans: to trade…or not to trade


For the past several years the NFL draft has come and gone without so much as a whisper for Tennessee Titans fans. Their home team had become predictably conservative in the draft. The anonymous roster that you see today is exhibit A through Z.

But this offseason felt different for Titans fans…in fact, it felt a lot like Christmas. And not just because they are anxiously anticipating an awesome new toy under the tree tomorrow night. It’s because the countdown has been just as celebrated as the actual event.

Happy Draft Eve Tennessee.

Titans fans are renewed with optimism. Their team has been the talk of the league the past six weeks….being linked to this team and that team. With each passing rumor, the idea of trading away the coveted number 2 pick is gaining more and more steam.

Why not trade down and acquire more picks? It makes sense for a team with so many holes to fill. Fans romanticize about the RGII trade, and what the Rams acquired for trading away their number 2 pick in 2012. At the very least the Titans could use that trade as a blueprint.

But what about the big elephant in the room? The lack of star players? The lack of an identity?

Star players are called that for a reason. They have an innate ability to rise to the occasion and perform at their best when the lights are the brightest. They must be game planned for…they cause matchup problems by simply stepping between the lines.

The elite star players of this draft are in the top 10, and Tennessee may find themselves doggy peddling through treacherous water if they try to get too cute on draft night.

Tennessee’s roster is already full of mid-to late round players. “Solid” guys with great character.

You know…that whole spill.

Conspicuously absent are the star players with star talent. Too many safe picks. What good does it do to have five players that are all NFL average at one position?

One Dez Bryant has more value than three Justin Hunters. That’s trading away a dollar in exchange for three quarters. Sometimes the value is not in the number, but the quality. Star players are valuable, and the top 10 of this draft is loaded with potential game changing rookies.

What’s often overlooked in the infamous 2012 RGIII trade is the fact that the Indianapolis Colts…who had the number 1 pick…didn’t trade that night. And yes, Andrew Luck seems to be the qb of his generation now…but back then it was still a gut feeling assumption for Indianapolis.

It’s hard to image that no one reached out the Colts for a crack at Luck in 2012. And who could blame them if they listened? They were coming off a league worst 2-14 season the year before, with numerous holes to fill…just like this year’s Titans.

Indy didn’t get cute. They didn’t overthink it and try to fix everything at once. They saw their face of the franchise and drafted him. And let the future chips fall where they may.

I wonder where the Colts would be today if they traded away the number 1 pick? A scary thought for the good people of Indiana.

The Titans’ recent draft history is also a trade for more picks red flag. In 2010 and 2011, Tennessee drafted 18 players. Only three are still on the roster, and only one is making a contribution (Jurrell Casey).  Trading down to acquire more players that will cycle out in a few seasons?

It’s no coincidence that Jurrell Casey is the last man standing, he also made the pro bowl two seasons ago.

Star players = value.

There may not be an Andrew Luck in this year’s draft, but there are several candidates worthy of the number 2 pick. Candidates that will make an immediate impact this year, on both sides of the ball.

The Titans can shed their boring anonymous persona in less than 24 hours. That is…if they want to.

Next: NFL Draft: My Favorite Scenarios for Tennessee Titans

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