2021 NFL Draft: Titans again paired with Northwestern CB Greg Newsome
By Will Lomas
Is Newsome their type?
This is going to be a battle for the Titans front office because Newsome fits some, but not all of their historical trends.
Let’s start with what he isn’t. Maybe most important, Newsome is a player who hasn’t been healthy over the course of his career.
Newsome has never played a full season despite being a starter for Northwestern for three years. Whether it is fair or not, the Titans have watched Adoree Jackson struggle to stay healthy for the last two years and Kristian Fulton couldn’t stay healthy this year either which forced them into some bad situations.
I’m going to guess that they are tired of spending premium picks on cornerbacks who aren’t constant fixtures on the defense.
Another thing that Newsome isn’t, is an SEC player. It has been a rollercoaster, but 5 of the Titans’ last 6 first or second round picks have been SEC players, including three-straight first round picks.
Get to the positives
Those are two big issues that the Titans might have with drafting Newsome in the first. Having said all that, I definitely understand why Tennessee might be interested in the Northwestern CB.
First of all, his tape is outstanding and he fits what the Titans are going to do schematically next year. His ability to stay sticky in man-coverage is impressive and he would be a great addition to the Kristian Fulton/Jackrabbit combination at corner.
Don’t ignore his athleticism either. While he didn’t blow the world away like Jaycee Horn did, Newsome is no slouch:
Speaking of numbers that matter, Newsome posted 20 pass deflections in 17 games for the Wildcats. That is 1.18 PBUs per game, well above Adoree Jackson’s 0.71 and Kristian Fulton’s 0.83.
Even with his missed time he still finished as a top-5 pass deflector in the Big 10 in 2019 and 2020. That is going to catch Jon Robinson’s eye.