Meetings at the NFL Combine are always interesting, so here is a closer look at running backs the Tennessee Titans met with this past week.
The 2020 NFL Combine will come to a close on Monday, and we will be left with plenty to discuss. This time of year, much is made of which draft prospects every team chooses to interview as we start connecting dots.
As of 2020, every NFL team is allowed to meet with 45 draft prospects for 18 minutes at a time. Turron Davenport of ESPN recently shed light on a few players the Titans chose to spend time with:
Now, this could simply be the team doing due diligence on prospective running backs. However, as far as we know, the Titans met with more running backs than any other position group.
This is definitely something to watch, especially with star running back Derrick Henry heading for free agency in a couple weeks. Could the Titans be preparing for life without Henry?
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For the record, I don’t believe the Titans will let Henry walk. I believe if the Titans are seriously considering drafting a running back, it will be someone to replace Dion Lewis. Since signing a 4-year deal with the Titans in 2018, Lewis has significantly underperformed and could be a cap casualty.
All of the running backs the Titans met with are most likely Day 1 or Day 2 draft picks, so this suggests the team could be eyeing a running back early to complement Henry.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire of LSU would be a very intriguing Lewis replacement.
Edwards-Helaire was second in the nation in receptions among running backs, with 55. Lewis was initially brought in to be a receiving threat out of the backfield, something he has (for the most part) been unable to do.
CEH would definitely be an upgrade in this department, and would be a solid round 2 target for the team.
An interesting note about this list of players: all of them, save for Dillon, are known as good pass catchers. Dillion, from Boston College, would be the closest in size too Henry. Dillon led the ACC in 2019 with 1685 rushing yards and added 14 TD’s.
If the Titans do lose Henry, I wouldn’t be surprised if they decided to draft a rookie bruiser like Dillon.
While this could all be simply due process, I believe the Titans are anticipating being without either Lewis or Henry for 2020. Getting to know the best running back prospects in the class early could put the Titans in a good spot if they do indeed need to find a new running back.