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Colts Titans

Titans 7-Round Mock Draft 2023: April Edition

  • Jack McKessy
  • April 18, 2023
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The 2023 NFL Draft begins in fewer than 10 days, and every fan base eagerly is awaiting their team’s upcoming rookie class. One of the 18 fanbases that have been waiting since the end of the 2022 regular season is that of the Tennessee Titans, the team that collapsed down the stretch one year after claiming the AFC’s No. 1 playoff seed. In 2022, they lost seven straight games to end the season, with their Week 18 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars knocking them out of a playoff spot.

The Titans are one of the teams with the highest potential to do something unexpected or interesting for the second year in a row. Last year, they traded away star wide receiver A.J. Brown on the first night of the draft. This year, rumors have been swirling for weeks that they’ll trade up for their future franchise quarterback—one year after they drafted quarterback Malik Willis to potentially be that guy—with Ryan Tannehill in the last year of his contract. Alternatively, Tennessee could stand pat and draft a top left tackle in the class with the 13th overall pick and fill a premium position of need.

What the Titans will do in the 2023 NFL Draft is what I’ll explore in this seven-round, Titans-only mock draft.

Round 1 (No. 3 overall): C.J. Stroud QB, Ohio State

In this mock draft, the Carolina Panthers take Bryce Young with the No. 1 overall pick, forcing the Texans to shift their attention to edge rusher Will Anderson Jr. with the second pick. With their top target off of the board and many quarterback-needy teams calling, the Arizona Cardinals decide to trade back from the third overall pick, picking up two extra first-round picks in 2024 and 2025 and a fourth-round pick in 2024. Former Titans director of player personnel and now Cardinals general manager Monti Ossenfort makes the deal that builds up his new team’s draft capital for years to come and gives his old team a shot at taking their quarterback of the future.

Round 2 (No. 41 overall): Will McDonald IV EDGE, Iowa State

A strong pre-draft process that included standout performances in the Senior Bowl and NFL Scouting Combine has had McDonald skyrocketing up draft boards. He’s a freak athlete on the edge that brings the upside at pass rusher the Titans need with Bud Dupree and DeMarcus Walker gone in free agency.

Round 3 (No. 72 overall): Garrett Williams CB, Syracuse

Tennessee was dead last in the NFL in passing yards allowed in 2022. Part of the equation to rectify that situation is getting pass rushers up front that generate pressure on opposing quarterbacks, which the Titans did in the second round with McDonald. So in the third round, they grab a cornerback with high potential at a bit of a bargain after an ACL tear ended Williams’ 2022 season early. Kristian Fulton is in the final year of his rookie contract, Roger McCreary can play nickel and Sean Murphy-Bunting is playing on a one-year deal. Williams, whenever he can play, is a physical and disruptive player that can quickly become a central piece of the Titans’ new defensive core.

Round 5 (No. 147 overall): Atonio Mafi IOL, UCLA

The Titans added a left tackle and right guard in free agency after releasing Taylor Lewan and letting Nate Davis walk. Mafi is a left guard with tons of power and size at 6-foot-4 and 355 pounds. He’s still raw after transitioning to the offensive line from nose tackle in 2020, but the potential is clearly there, even if he needs a year in an NFL locker room to develop.

Round 6 (No. 186 overall): Matt Landers WR, Arkansas

Landers is a second freak athlete with high potential in this mock after the Titans took McDonald a few rounds earlier. He transferred to Arkansas for the 2022 season and replaced now-Titan Treylon Burks as the Razorbacks’ leading wide receiver. After measuring in at 6-foot-4 and 200 pounds, Landers ran a 4.37-second 40-yard dash, then recorded a 37-inch vertical leap and 10-foot-10-inch broad jump. The Titans’ wide receiver room is one of the thinnest in the league and Landers would give them an excellent athlete that can be a real asset for their new quarterback across from Burks.

Round 7 (No. 228 overall): Jake Andrews IOL, Troy

Andrews gives Tennessee some extra depth anywhere on the interior of the offensive line as he’s played left guard, center, and right guard for Troy. Here in the seventh round, adding that kind of versatile depth is super valuable.

Written By

Jack McKessy