NFL Draft: East-West Shrine Game Preview – East Team

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - SEPTEMBER 01: A referee's hat sits on the sidelines during a preseason game between the Miami Dolphins and the Tennessee Titans at Hard Rock Stadium on September 1, 2016 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MIAMI GARDENS, FL - SEPTEMBER 01: A referee's hat sits on the sidelines during a preseason game between the Miami Dolphins and the Tennessee Titans at Hard Rock Stadium on September 1, 2016 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /

NFL Draft season is officially here after the Tennessee Titans ended their playoff run. The East-West Shrine Game is approaching, and there are future potential Titans playing in the game.

This weekend has been a heck of a roller coaster of emotions, from the divisional round loss to HC Mike Mularkey getting fired. The Tennessee Titans should be excited, as GM Jon Robinson took charge and will finally get to select “his guy.” One thing to look forward to, other than hoping the Eagles and Patriots lose this weekend (so the Titans can interview their assistant coaches), is the East-West Shrine Game. The East-West Shrine game is one of many major NFL Draft events that takes place this offseason. Below are some players from the East Team that Titans fans might want to keep an eye on during the game and the draft process.


  1. QB Riley Ferguson, Memphis

A former Tennessee transfer, Ferguson put up ridiculous numbers at Memphis. Ferguson threw for 7,955 yards with 70 touchdowns and 19 interceptions in just two years. Memphis has a high flying offense and Ferguson was the perfect fit. He has enough arm talent to play at the next level, but he tends to rely on his arm a bit too much. If the Titans want a young quarterback to groom behind Marcus Mariota, Ferguson has the ability to be that guy.

  1. WR DaeSean Hamilton, Penn State

Hamilton’s Fiesta Bowl performance helped his draft stock rise, similar to his former teammate from a year before, Chris Godwin. Hamilton was the leading receiver for the Nittany Lions, as he was targeted 73 times. Not only is Hamilton a great receiver, he is also versatile, as he has played all three wide receiver positions. Another plus for Hamilton is that he has shown the ability to get open and find the soft spot in the zone. The Titans could always use a do-it-all wide receiver to add to the already young receiving corps.

  1. WR Daurice Fountain, Northern Iowa

Fountain had a breakout year for the Panthers in 2017, snagging 66 receptions for 943 yards and 12 touchdowns. Not only did Fountain lead the team in all three categories, he also was among the FCS leaders in touchdowns. Fountain’s production has continued to grow throughout his college career, and it is obvious that he is a red zone threat. The only negative is he has played against weaker competition, so he has a ton to prove this week.

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Tennessee Titans

  1. RB Ralph Webb, Vanderbilt

Over his four-year career, Webb was on some horrible teams, but his numbers continued to stand out. Webb was utilized as the workhorse and put up the numbers to prove it. Over his four-year career, he ran for over 4,185 yards on 931 carries and scored 32 rushing touchdowns. Webb had his worst year as a senior but still recorded 10 touchdowns. Webb also needs to show that he can catch the ball out of the backfield.

5. OG Austin Kuhnert, North Dakota State

A four-year starter and a 2017  FCS first team All-American, Kuhnert was a versatile lineman for North Dakota. Kuhnert has played three positions (guard, center and right tackle) but will most likely be a guard or center at the next level. Kuhnert has been a part of a winning organization at the FCS level and it will be exciting to see how well he competes against tougher competition. Jon Robinson has shown that he is not scared to go after players at any level. Titans need depth at the guard and center position, and Kuhnert might be a player the Titans consider.

  1. C Brian Allen, Michigan State

A team captain and second team All-Big Ten center, Allen is known for his durability, starting in 27 straight games out of his 37 starts. Allen is similar to Kuhnert, as he has the ability to play numerous positions (guard and center). Allen was a top candidate for the Rimington Trophy, which goes to the best center in the country.  According to Pro Football focus, Allen was also ranked as the number one center in the Big Ten and number five in all of FBS this season. Again, I can see the Titans attacking the center and guard position hard this offseason and Allen should be one player we keep an eye on.


  1. DE Chad Thomas, University of Miami

The Canes’ team captain, Chad Thomas had a pretty good season on a very talented defense. Thomas recorded 41 total tackles, with 12.5 tackles for a loss and 4.5 sacks in 2017. Over the course of Thomas’ career, he has continued to improve his craft in both the run and pass. For the third year in a row, Thomas had at least 26 pressures in 2017. Thomas provides the ideal measurements for an edge rusher, standing at 6 foot 6 and weighing in at 275 pounds.

What has been his weakness is he hasn’t put all his talent together due to his lack of instincts. The one positive about this is his weakness can be coached up. That being said, he has all the right tools and measurements to be a fantastic edge prospect.

  1. LB Chris Worley, Ohio State

Worley is a team-first type player. Originally, he was a safety and was asked to move to outside linebacker. After three years of competing and one year of starting at the position, he was asked to move to inside backer his senior year. Worley had a pretty good season, recording a total of 56 tackles with five tackles for a loss, two passes batted down and one sack. Worley has always been labeled a cover linebacker and was never able to become a dominant edge presence. The biggest issue is that Worley lacks size to play the middle linebacker position, but his team-first attitude and versatility are traits that make him attractive.

S Damon Webb, Ohio State

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Similar to his teammate, Worley, Webb is known for his versatility. Webb came to Ohio State as a cornerback and was asked to make the switch to safety in his junior year. He struggled early but impressed in 2017 after working all offseason with his defensive coordinator, Greg Schiano. In 2017, Webb recorded 61 tackles with four interceptions and three pass breakups. Webb’s versatility and team-first mantra has helped him in the draft process. The Titans love versatility at this position and if Webb impresses, Jon Robinson should take a deeper look.

Bonus Player:

  1. QB Quinton Flowers, South Florida

Flowers is an electric athlete playing the quarterback position. Flowers has been a player that is just fun to watch, as he can make a play both with his arm and legs. He is a bit small for position, and most likely will be moved to play another position if he wants to make it at the next level. Who wouldn’t want this guy backing up Mariota? Even if Mariota were to get hurt and out for a game, Flowers has the skill set to keep the offensive scheme similar. Matt Cassel and Brandon Weeden are not the answers at backup quarterback. This is an area of need for the Titans and I can see the Titans making a change this offseason.

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