The Tennessee Titans continued to fill gaps in Day Two of the 2021 NFL Draft by adding three new members to the team, while failing to address an area of desperate need at wide receiver. The Titans will enter Saturday’s Day Three with six picks remaining for rounds 4-7, with significant areas of need still unfilled, including wide receiver and tight end.
Let’s quickly review last night’s draft picks.
Dillon Radunz – OT, North Dakota State University
While many Titans fans thought General Manager Jon Robinson would use this pick to fill a critical need at wide receiver, the Titans instead selected Radunz with the 53rd overall pick in the second round of the draft. Radunz comes from North Dakota State, where he most recently spent time protecting his former teammate and the 3rd overall pick of the draft, Trey Lance.
Radunz made 32 starts for the Bisons, posting an unblemished 32-0 record for the FCS powerhouse. The 6’6” 300lb offensive lineman tallied three national championships in his college career.
In Radunz, #Titans get presumably their RT of the future. The 6-6, 299-pounder tore it up at the Senior Bowl, where he was named the "Overall Practice Player of the Week." Has a nice bit of nasty to him.
— John Glennon (@glennonsports) May 1, 2021
While Radunz was not the sexy pick Titans fans were hoping for with a handful of pass catchers still available at No. 53, the front office found value in the 2019 All-American. Radunz is expected to compete at the right tackle position, where he will be jockeying with Kendall Lamm for the starting spot.
Dillon Radunz is the pick for the Titans in the second round‼️
⚔️716 career pass blocking snaps
⚔️2 QB hits
⚔️4 sacks allowed pic.twitter.com/lpfQdD0CbS
— PFF TEN Titans (@PFF_Titans) May 1, 2021
Monty Rice – ILB, University of Georgia
The Titans were set to draft at No. 85 before trading back with Green Bay, enabling the Packers to move up and select Clemson WR Amari Rodgers. Tennessee received the No. 92 and No. 135 picks in exchange.
With a desperate need at wide receiver and a handful of viable options left on the board, the Titans instead used the 92nd pick to draft Monty Rice, who primarily played at insider linebacker for Georgia.
Rice started 28 games in Athens, where he accumulated 49 tackles and four TFLs in his senior season with the Bulldogs.
#Titans get an excellent leader in Monty Rice. Exceptionally high football IQ and leadership grades. Injury affected my ranking of him. He's STOUT at the point of attack.
— Matt Miller (@nfldraftscout) May 1, 2021
Rice’s strengths are eerily similar to those of current Titans starting ILB Rashaan Evans. Evans, interestingly enough, has not had his fifth-year option picked up by the Titans and quite possibly could be shown the door if the 2021-2022 season looks anything like last year.
Gauging the pulse of social media, Titans fans were upset, and reasonably so. To many fans, it appears as if Robinson and Vrabel are looking to address the concerns of next year’s roster instead of filling the massive hole at wide receiver after the team moved on from Corey Davis and Adam Humphries.
While the Titans staff would not confirm or deny it during its press availability last night, this pass on the wide receiver position in yesterday’s draft leaves everyone wondering if a rumored deal is in the works for Atlanta WR Julio Jones.
Robinson asked if the #Titans have contacted the Falcons about Julio Jones: "No comment."
— AtoZSports Nashville (@AtoZSports) May 1, 2021
Elijah Molden – DB, University of Washington
Elijah Molden is most likely to play the biggest role in his rookie season with the Titans, as compared to his fellow Day 2 counterparts. Selected in the third round with the 100th pick in the draft, Molden was considered to be a steal by many draft analysts.
Playing as a safety and a slot cornerback at Washington, Molden will likely find himself on the field in third-down passing situations this season. This is an area where the Titans allowed opponents to convert at a 52 percent rate just one season ago.
Molden is a slot corner/safety type who is limited athletically, but he is a FANTASTIC football player. Smart, tough, big time playmaker. Very much in the Logan Ryan mold.
— Mike Herndon (@MikeMiracles) May 1, 2021
Molden is considered to be a good tackler for his 5-foot-9 frame and is a welcome addition to the Titans’ new-look defensive backfield.
Passing on Pass Catchers
While the Titans’ front office is excited about these three picks, Day Two was a head-scratcher for most Titans fans.
With the team expected to compete for a Super Bowl, it is important to find guys who can come in and make the team better THIS season. By the looks of these three picks, it is hard to envision any of these three starting for the team Week One, barring injuries from a guy in ahead of them on the depth chart.
A major point of contention lies in the fact that the team has yet to draft a pass catcher. Whether that be to replace the production of Davis and Humphries, or to fill the void that TE Jonnu Smith leaves behind, the Titans have failed to fill a major area of need in the first two days of the draft.
It is important to reiterate that the Titans are not done yet and have six picks to finalize their 2021 NFL Draft class. But in the same breath, the Titans are dangerously close to completely striking out on one of the deepest draft classes at the wide receiver position we have seen in a long time.
Titans still have 6 picks remaining for tomorrow:
Round 4: 126
Round 4: 135
Round 5: 166
Round 6: 205
Round 6: 215
Round 7: 232
Still need to add WR (especially slot), pass rusher and TE. They feel impact players are still available. https://t.co/p8DDUP4DwA
— TURRON DAVENPORT (@TDavenport_NFL) May 1, 2021
Featured image courtesy of Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports