Titans select Gregory Rousseau in Mel Kiper’s first mock draft

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Mike Moraitis
·2 min read
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ESPN’s Mel Kiper released his first mock draft of 2021 on Tuesday, and in it he has the Tennessee Titans taking a prospect at No. 22 overall that has been pegged to the team in other mock drafts we’ve covered.

That player is Miami (FL) defensive end Gregory Rousseau. Here’s what Kiper had to say about his pick for Tennessee:

This has to be an edge rusher, right? The Titans had a putrid pass rush last season, finishing with 19 total sacks, which was only two more than the last-ranked Bengals. They got very little from free-agent signing Jadeveon Clowney, and their leading sacker Harold Landry finished with only 5.5. That’s not good enough for a team that thinks it’s a Super Bowl contender. The 6-foot-7 Rousseau, another opt-out, had 15.5 sacks in a breakout 2019 season, but he doesn’t have an elite first step and needs to add some moves to his repertoire. With only one year of production and no live football in a year, he’s another wild card in his class. But again, teams love pass-rushers, so he could be in demand.

Despite the 6-foot-7, 267-pound defender finishing with an impressive 15.5 sacks in 2019, he’s still a bit of a wild card. Rousseau opted out of the 2020 campaign and saw his 2018 season end early after two games due to a fractured ankle, so there isn’t a lot of tape to go on.

While Rousseau is no doubt an intriguing prospect (check out a scouting report here), he’s going to be raw and needs some development. Still, we’re definitely a fan of his potential and would sign up for this pick at No. 22.

After the Titans had one of the league’s worst pass rushes in 2020, general manager Jon Robinson needs to explore every avenue possible to upgrade.

His top priority should be adding a pass rusher in free agency with Tennessee in win-now mode and needing an immediate upgrade that a rookie might not provide, but we’d also like to see Robinson add one in the draft after failing to do so last year.

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