NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Playing host to the 2019 NFL Draft, Nashville celebrated the league’s premiere offseason event in a way not yet seen before. But, now that the picks for all 32 franchises are in the books, it is time to see how the Tennessee Titans stack up against their three divisional foes.

I despise grading drafts but we all do them in the aftermath to keep the content machine churning. In fact, I have so little interest in taking these grades seriously, there is one more grade classification than there are AFC South teams! So, here are the measurements we will go by:

A = ADEQUATE

AA = ABOVE AVERAGE

U = UNDERWHELMING

C = CATASTROPHIC

T = TOP 5 2020 PICK

  1. Houston Texans
    Apr 25, 2019; Nashville, TN, USA; Tytus Howard (Alabama State) is selected as the number twenty-three overall pick to the Houston Texans in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft in Downtown Nashville. Howard was not in attendance. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
    • Draft Picks:
      • Rd. 1 – No. 23: OT Tytus Howard, Alabama State
      • Rd. 2 – No. 54: CB Lonnie Johnson Jr., Kentucky
      • Rd. 2 – No. 55: OT Max Scharping, Northern Illinois
      • Rd. 3 – No. 86: TE Kahale Warring, San Diego State
      • Rd. 5 – No. 161: DE Charles Omenihu, Texas
      • Rd. 6 – No. 195: CB Xavier Crawford, Central Michigan
      • Rd. 7 – No. 220: FB Cullen Gillaspia, Texas A&M
    • Grade: (C)atastrophic
      • Houston would have graded out higher if they’d done more to shore up their front five in free agency but when Matt Kalil is your biggest addition to protect Deshaun Watson and the two players drafted at the position are considered projects, the franchise QB may again require special travel accommodations in 2019. Howard possesses the ability to perform at the NFL level but the word on him is it may take more time for him to acclimate than one would hope for a first-round pick. Johnson Jr. should help bolster the secondary along with free agent acquisitions Bradley Roby and Tashaun Gipson after Kevin Johnson was released. The Texans did do well to juice up their pass rush with Omenihu, a value pick in the fifth round.
  2. Indianapolis Colts
    Mar 4, 2019; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Temple defensive back Rock Ya-Sin (DB36) goes through workout drills during the 2019 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
    • Draft Picks:
      • Rd. 2 – No. 34: CB Rock Ya-Sin, Temple
      • Rd. 2 – No. 49: DE Ben Banogu, TCU
      • Rd. 2 – No. 59: WR Parris Campbell, Ohio State
      • Rd. 3 – No. 89: OLB Bobby Okereke, Standford
      • Rd. 4 – No. 109: DB Khari Willis, Michigan State
      • Rd. 5 – No. 144: DB Marvell Tell III, USC
      • Rd. 5 – No. 164: OLB E.J. Speed, Tarleton State
      • Rd. 6 – No. 199: OLB Gerri Green, Mississippi State
      • Rd. 7 – No. 240: OT Jackson Barton, Utah
      • Rd. 7 – No. 246: OL Javon Patterson, Ole Miss
    • Grade: (A)bove (A)verage
      • While Indianapolis did not finish first in the divisional standings by record, one would have difficulty arguing that they were not superior to Houston down the stretch last year. Colts GM Chris Ballard had an impeccable draft with two eventual First-Team All-Pros in 2018 then traded out of this year’s first round to rack up three second-rounders that filled areas of immediate need with above average talent. Offensive line play and impact rookies often do not translate from year-to-year because of physical toll on the bodies and more film to scheme for but, on paper, Ballard did well to continue to build around an exceptional quarterback with cheap labor that will help prolong the health of their salary cap. 10 deep breaths, Tennessee fans…
  3. Jacksonville Jaguars
    Apr 25, 2019; Nashville, TN, USA; Josh Allen (Kentucky) is selected as the number seven overall pick to the Jacksonville Jaguars in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft in Downtown Nashville. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
    • Draft Picks:
      • Rd. 1 – No. 7: OLB Josh Allen, Kentucky
      • Rd. 2 – No. 35: OT Jawaan Taylor, Florida
      • Rd. 3 – No. 69: TE Josh Oliver, San Jose State
      • Rd. 3 – No. 98: LB Quincy Williams, Murray State
      • Rd. 5 – No. 140: RB Ryquell Armstead,  Temple
      • Rd. 6 – No. 178: QB Gardner Minshew, Washington State
      • Rd. 7 – No. 235: DT Dontavius Russell, Auburm
    • Grade: (T)op 5 2020 Pick
      • The draft broke beautifully in Jacksonville’s favor to land Allen at No. 7 as a replacement for Dante Fowler and Taylor in the second round is a great value to help keep new quarterback Nick Foles upright. The Jaguars tight end room was laid to waste by injury in 2018 and Armstead gives them a third-down option without T.J. Yeldon in the fold. But I will never buy Foles’ stock no matter how well he played in the Super Bowl run and for him to land with a rudderless franchise like the Jags wreaks of a 5-11 campaign. Thoughts and prayers up for Jalen Ramsey’s sanity.
  4. Tennessee Titans
    Jan 1, 2019; Tampa, FL, USA; Mississippi State Bulldogs defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons (94) reacts to a sack during the first quarter against the Iowa Hawkeyes in the 2019 Outback Bowl at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports
    •  Draft Picks:
      • Rd. 1 – No. 19: DL Jeffery Simmons, Mississippi State
      • Rd. 2 – No. 51: WR A.J. Brown, Ole Miss
      • Rd. 3 – No. 82: OL Nate Davis, Charlotte
      • Rd. 4 – No. 116: DB Amani Hooker, Iowa
      • Rd. 5 – No. 168: OLB D’Andre Walker, Georgia
      • Rd. 6 – No. 188: LB David Long Jr., West Virgina
    • Grade: (A)dequate
      • Dumping on Jacksonville likely makes this appear as homer analysis but this particular draft screams feast or famine for general manager Jon Robinson. Simmons, despite an introductory press conference filled with all the feels and countless testaments to his reformation, will likely always be viewed as a character risk. Add to that the knee injury that will keep him sidelined for the bulk of the season and you have a situation ripe for future critics. The Titans did well in getting Brown in the second to immediately improve their weaponry and any small-school knocks on Davis appears to be overblown. But no additional edge rushers until Walker on Day 3 places a heavier burden on schematically manufactured pressure for a team that already relied on it so much a year ago.

Featured Image: Kirby Lee – USA TODAY Sports

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