2018 NFL Mock Draft: Tennessee Titans take Josh Sweat

TALLAHASSEE, FL - OCTOBER 21: Defensive end Josh Sweat
TALLAHASSEE, FL - OCTOBER 21: Defensive end Josh Sweat /

If the Tennessee Titans love Josh Sweat, they should make another team pay them before they take him.

Based on what we have actually seen from Josh Sweat, the Tennessee Titans should not take him with the 25th overall pick.

It doesn’t make sense, he hasn’t been productive and even if you want to argue that he was used incorrectly, that didn’t stop players like Hercules Mata’afa, Derek Barnett and Soloman Thomas from being productive in college.

Aside from him not having one of those dominant years, he is also a huge medical concern. In terms of injuries, this is what the last four years look like for Sweat (thanks to Dane Bruglar, go but his draft guide):

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2014: Dislocated knee cap/torn ACL that almost forced him to lose his leg

2016: Torn meniscus

2017: Tore ligaments in his finger

That is three surgeries in four years. Not great for a guy that is going to have to deal with 300 lb OL and avoid cut blocks at the NFL level.

His saving grace to me is that he is one of the best athletes in the entire 2018 NFL Draft despite all those injuries. By all accounts he is a very resilient player and his work ethic and intangibles may want the group of Jon Robinson, Mike Vrabel, Dean Pees, Shane Bowen, and Terrell Williams want to take a gamble on him.

If that is true and the if the Titans are going to make him their first pick, then I expect Jon Robinson to make people pay him to do that. What I mean is that, Robinson knows the projection on Sweat is maybe the 5th EDGE player at best?

So this is what makes the most sense to me in a mock draft where the Titans move back to get Josh Sweat.

Tennessee Titans receive picks 31 and 43 from the New England Patriots for pick 25.

Round 1, pick 31: Josh Sweat EDGE, Florida State

-We already talked about him.

Round 2, pick 43: Maurice Hurst DL, Michigan

-The Tennessee Titans are going to have to pass on the top-4 linebackers in this draft to take Sweat and if they do that they are going to have to find a way to help their young LBs like Jayon Brown and a rookie we will talk about later.

One way to do that is to get the best interior DL in the draft. Hurst is strong and smooth and can play nose or 1-tech at a high level right away. Where Sweat is all athleticism with little production, Hurst is a great mix of both.

In fact, Hurst has more TFLs and just two fewer sacks despite starting 14 fewer games.

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  • Round 2, pick 57: Justin Reid S, Stanford

    -The Tennessee Titans have had Reid in as an official 30 visit which is huge. They are looking for someone to compete and potentially round out the best group of DBs in the NFL from top to bottom.

    Reid has the production and athleticism that often results in high caliber players. He is fluid enough to play coverage on the outside but not soft like some hybrid DBs. Think of him as Minkah Fitzpatrick-lite.

    Round 3, pick 89: Hercules Mata’afa EDGE, Washington State

    -Again, the Titans went boom or bust in the first round with Sweat, but now they take another highly productive player to play beside him. This gives the Titans a nice edge pairing for the next 4 years if both pan out.

    Round 4, pick 125: Shaquem Griffin EDGE/LB, UCF

    -Griffin has everything I want in a player, my only question  is where do you play him? He has the athleticism of a DB and the production of a top-end EDGE. However, his size and his style of play really make him a better fit as a mix of ILB and EDGE.

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    This sounds exactly like the MO of Jamie Collins coming out and that is how I would use him. Move him all around and from week to week to get him in the best position to make plays.

    The reason I make this move is to build the front-7 of the defense like this:

    Front four: Brian Orakpo, Maurice Hurst, Jurrell Casey, Derrick Morgan

    Linebackers: Wesley Woodyard, Griffin, Jayon Brown

    Round 5, pick 162: Richie James WR, MTSU

    -Tennessee has brought James in for a visit and he is exactly the kind of WR I would expect them to draft. He has a ton of potential, and put up great numbers at the collegiate level. While he is raw, he would have plenty of time to develop and work his way on to special teams in his rookie year.

    Round 6, pick 199: Ryan Nall RB, Oregon State

    Nall isn’t dynamic, but the Titans need someone to compete for the 3rd RB job in camp. He is someone that can be used in some creative ways and putting he (6’2) and Henry out on the field at the same time would be very imposing.