19. Tennessee Titans: Yetur Gross-Matos EDGE, Penn State
Lets talk about the Titans needs really quickly. The way I see it, the Titans are good or locked into contracts at these positions if you make some easy assumptions about free agency (Jack Conklin, Ryan Tannehill, Logan Ryan, Derrick Henry all re-signed).
-QB, WR, TE, RB1, LT, LG, C, RT, EDGE1, DL, LB, DB.
What that leaves as the biggest issues is (in order of how they were listed): RB2, RG, EDGE2
History has shown that you can get RBs on Day 2 and beyond, same thing with offensive line which can be largely masked by good QB play and/or good play calling.
So that leads me to thinking that the most likely picks in order are: EDGE, blue-chip player, RB, then RG.
As it happens, YGM is one of the better EDGEs in this class and he fits what Jon Robinson and Mike Vrabel seem to look for in defensive players.
The first box to check is his production and impact on the team he played on. He passes that test as two year starter for a Penn State team that has been great on defense over the past two seasons with him on the field (Football Outsiders has Penn State as the 12th best defense in 2018 and the 9th best in 2019).
Then we need to look at individual stats. Over his 23 games as a starter in his sophomore and junior years, he has 16 sacks and 33.5 TFLs, which comes out to 0.7 sacks per game and 1.47 TFLs per game.
That is very nice production and while it isn’t elite, it is plenty to check off the boxes that you want from a 1st round EDGE if he is athletic enough.
The EDGE class is interesting, but the length, hand use, counter moves, and size that YGM has really make him intriguing and worth going after in the first round. Pairing him with Harold Landry on the outside gives you the classic speed/technician tandem that works so frequently in the NFL, and it allows the defense to continue to play at a high level.
Everything on the stat sheet says that the offense needs more talent, but when you look at what has happened since Ryan Tannehill has taken over the fact may be that the weapons are there and they are finally being used correctly.