Round 3, Pick 69: Braden Smith, OG, Auburn
After locking up Josh Kline to a long-term contract, the Titans were only able to tender Quinton Spain. This means that guard will be a pressing concern next season if Spain asks for too much money or decides to test free agency. Braden Smith looks the part of an NFL guard with the ideal frame and measurables at the position, but he plays stiff at times, which impacts his effectiveness as a pass blocker. That is further exacerbated by his playing in an Auburn offense that did not require top-notch pass protection. That said, Smith’s high floor makes him a great prospect for a Titans team that may need him to play sooner rather than later.
By drafting Smith, the Titans can add a prospect who is pro-ready in case of injury along the offensive line and can also provide the team with an insurance policy in case they lose Spain next year. Some writers have expressed optimism that Smith could play on the edge at tackle if necessary, which makes him even more attractive to the Titans since Jack Conklin is coming off of a major injury.