Easton Freeze’s Mock Draft 2.0: Full First Round + Titans 7-Round Mock

In less than 36 hours, we’re getting this draft party started.

The Titans are slated to pick at 7 overall, and all eyes are on the tackles and receivers. The front office has done a good job of keeping their cards close to the chest, though there are a handful of things to point us in the right direction. So before we get to my final mock draft of the year, I want to empty the bag on what I Think (an educated guess), what I Feel (a little more than just reading the tea leaves), and what I Know (firm, reliable reasons to believe it).

I Know the Titans are interested in trading down from pick 7 if they are presented with the right opportunity. This is based on things I have been told directly from more than one person in or around the Titans building who I trust.

I Know there is at least one player the Titans would not trade down from, should they be available at pick 7. We know this because Ran Carthon said it explicitly during his pre-draft press conference.

I Feel the player the Titans wouldn’t trade down from is Marvin Harrison Jr, and Malik Nabers could also possibly be on that list. Their opinion on Nabers is what I am least certain of, due in large part to my next point:

I Know there is smoke on Malik Nabers’ personality and behavior being problematic, and I wonder if that is something influencing the Titans’ opinion of him. My wording here is very important: I’m not saying that I feel he has off-field issues, I’m saying I know there is smoke on the topic. While some of the specific things I’ve heard have been significant enough to matter in my opinion, much of it has come out here recently as we near the draft. It may be completely bogus, or at least intentionally blown out of proportion. Unfortunately, character smears at this point in the process aren’t uncommon with top prospects. If he were to be the Titans’ selection, I’m not interested in going into my relationship with him with any preconceived notions.

I Think the Titans will ultimately end up making a pick at 7 overall, despite wanting to trade down. Why? This gets a little complicated here, just stick with me. If you believe Harrison Jr. and Nabers are players they wouldn’t trade down from, that means a trade situation would require:

  • Two of the first six picks in the draft to be Harrison Jr. and Malik Nabers, which is a strong possibility
  • One of the top four QBs to fall to seven with a team interested in trading up with the Titans to draft them, OR for there to be a wildcard team willing to trade up to seven for a non-quarterback

I consider the second requirement to be far less likely than the first. When you walk through the potential trade partners (which I have spent a considerable amount of time doing), you constantly run into a lack of capital, a lack of incentive, a team that’s too far down the board, or a conflict of interest. Maybe the chips fall the right way and they get it done. but I think it’s less than a 50/50 proposition.

I Feel that if the Titans stay at pick 7 (presuming Harrison Jr. is gone) they will draft Malik Nabers or Joe Alt, in that order. Again, their opinion of Nabers is what I’m least certain of. It may be a real split decision in the building.

And finally, I Think their board looks like this:

  1. Marvin Harrison Jr. | WR | Ohio St.
  2. Malik Nabers | WR | LSU
  3. Joe Alt | OT | Notre Dame
  4. J.C. Latham | OT | Alabama
  5. Olu Fashanu | OT | Penn St. OR Rome Odunze | WR | Washington

One last thought: as long as the Titans stay within the first 11 to 14 picks on Thursday, I don’t see many scenarios in which they make a decision worth being upset with. It will take them going wildly off the board to make me upset. So many more of their paths lead to a pleasing outcome where they’re at than a frustrating one, due in large part to how much I love their options at the top of this class.

Alright, that’s it. Those are my final thoughts on what will happen. Now all that’s left is to see what they actually do! In the meantime though, here is my final mock draft. A quick disclaimer: This mock goes a bit off the rails. Instead of approaching this with the goal of getting everything 100% right, I chose to take every interesting thing I truly believe may end up happening and lump them into a single mock. So will all of these surprises befall us on Thursday evening? Certainly not (though if they do, I will never shut up about it). But I do think a couple of them will. Enjoy!

    First Round Mock Draft 2.0

    1. Chicago Bears- Caleb Williams | QB | USC

    When I said this would get a little crazy, did you think that I was talking about the first pick? Congrats, Chicago. I hope you finally found your guy after wandering the QB desert for 40 years.

    2. Washington Commanders- Drake Maye | QB | UNC

    I’m sticking to my guns on this one. Daniels to the Commanders at 2 has never passed the smell test for me. Maybe I’m wrong and he’s their guy, but don’t you find it odd how much aggressive noise there has been on this suddenly? Every national analyst seems to be sticking their chest out and saying it’s definitely Daniels. Feels like intentionally planted intel to me. Don’t forget that new GM Adam Peters came from the John Lynch tree in San Francisco and was a part of the leak-less Mac Jones/Trey Lance psyop a few years ago.

    3. New England Patriots- Jayden Daniels | QB | LSU

    Daniels falls to the Patriots, a team that was reportedly high on the Heisman Winner very early on in this draft process. I think the Kraft family would be pleased to bring in a young talent whose game, for better or for worse, is modern and presents a dual threat to opposing defenses.

    4. Minnesota Vikings (via ARI)- J.J. McCarthy | QB | Michigan

    With every passing day, I worry the Vikings may not find a dance partner to trade up for their QB. And if that’s the case, don’t let their media damage control fool you: it’s a massive offseason failure on their part. But we’ll cross that bridge when we get there. In this mock, they get it done with Arizona’s Monti Ossenfort (Titans legend) and land QB4. Minnesota sends picks 11 and 23 to the Cardinals in exchange for number 4. I like McCarthy’s fit in Minnesota the best of all his potential landing spots. With plenty of support around him, he can start by just doing the Kirk Cousins thing in that offense and grow from there.

    5. Los Angeles Chargers- J.C. Latham | OT | Alabama

    Here’s the first big surprise. J.C. Latham is the first tackle off the board, not Joe Alt! I think there is a very real possibility this will happen. And I think there is a strong possibility the Chargers are who he lands with. I see Latham as a stronger fit in that Harbaugh offense than Alt. He’s a big, nasty, wicked strong tackle who can maul in the run game till the cows come home. Whether it’s at 5 in a trade-down, I think he’s LA’s preference.

    6. New York Giants- Marvin Harrison Jr. | WR | Ohio St.

    Giants fans are overdue for a good thing to happen to them, and in this draft, they finally collect. WR1 in this class surprisingly falls into their laps at 6 overall and provides them with something they’ve been in search of since the early Odell days: a true WR1.

    7. Arizona Cardinals (via TEN)- Malik Nabers | WR | LSU

    Ossenfort pulls the full Monti once again! In a similar fashion to last year, the Cardinals trade down just to trade right back up with the Titans to land their star receiver. Arizona sends picks 11, 66, and 90 to Tennessee in exchange for number 7. Kyler Murray has a WR1 again.

    8. Jacksonville Jaguars (via ATL)- Rome Odunze | WR | Washington

    I have a strong gut feeling either the Colts or the Jaguars come out of this weekend with a sexy, shiny new toy. And in the case of this mock, it’s both of them (sorry, spoiler). GM Trent Baalke and Co. need a win this offseason badly, and after accidentally losing Calvin Ridley to their division rivals, they trade up with the Falcons to 8 to land Trevor Lawrence’s new best friend: Rome Odunze. Jacksonville sends picks 17 and 48 to Atlanta for picks 8 and 109.

    9. Chicago Bears- Byron Murphy | DL | Texas

    The latest draft scuttlebutt is that Byron Murphy may very well be the first defender off the board. The Bears choose to shore up their defense now that the top 3 defenders are off the board, a unit that was trending strongly in the right direction already last season.

    10. New York Jets- Joe Alt | OT | Notre Dame

    The Jets could do anything here. They are, in fact, still the New York Jets. Many have mocked them a pass-catcher, but I think they’ll look to further protect Aaron Rodgers. They grabbed a pair of veteran tackles in free agency, but Alt will compete to start in camp and at worst serve as elite security behind the two old guys on the ends.

    11. Tennessee Titans (via ARI)- Olu Fashanu | OT | Penn St.

    The Titans do what they wanted to coming in: land a stud tackle AND recoup some Day 2 capital in the process. They take Fashanu as the third tackle off the board and run out of night one like they robbed the place. More on Fashanu’s fit in the full Titans 7-round mock below.

    12. Denver Broncos- Dallas Turner | EDGE | Alabama

    The Broncos have their top edge rusher fall into their laps at 12, adding some teeth to their defensive front. With cornerstone players in Turner and Surtain, they have the foundation of their defense to rebuild around.

    13. Las Vegas Raiders- Michael Penix Jr | QB | Washington

    Every year we fall for this. We always mock one too many quarterbacks in the First Round. It’s a trap. But I’m walking right into it. The connection between Penix and Vegas is strong. He’d be an upgrade over Gardner Minshew, at least in theory. Let him throw his accurate-ish deep ball up for Davante to go find. I can see that working.

    14. New Orleans Saints- Taliese Fuaga | OT | Oregon St.

    Nobody needs a tackle like the Saints need a tackle (actually the Titans do, but you get my point). Trevor Penning is on the brink of being declared a failed experiment, and Ryan Ramczyk may be more injured than previously thought. They need Fuaga in a bad way. He comes in and can play inside at first if needed, but has left and right side versatility if they choose to bump him outside.

    15. Indianapolis Colts- Brock Bowers | TE | Georgia

    The Colts get their new toy, falling right into their laps at 15. There’s been talk of Indy considering moving up for a weapon, but in this case, it’s not needed. Gone are the days of rolling out Mo Allie Cox on Sundays, or praying that Jelani Woods lives up to his potential. Bowers is dangerous in the hands of Steichen and Richardson.

    16. Seattle Seahawks- Troy Fautanu | OT | Washington

    I like this fit so much. Fautanu has been criminally underrated in this draft process, and he presents true 5-tool versatility. The Seahawks can plug-and-play him anywhere up front as needed.

    17. Atlanta Falcons (via JAX)- Jared Verse | EDGE | Florida St.

    The Falcons make their pick after moving back and select Jared Verse. They’ve needed pass-rush juice since the Obama administration. Verse is the cure to what ails them.

    18. Cincinnati Bengals- Amarius Mims | OT | Georgia

    The Bengals make a savvy pick with Mims here, as they pursue the largest tackle room in the history of the universe. He can serve as elite depth and learn behind Trent and Orlando Brown, taking over once one moves on or gets injured.

    19. Los Angeles Rams- Quinyon Mitchell | CB | Toledo

    The Rams found some young talent on the defensive front last year in Kobie Turner, so they choose to take the top CB in the draft to add some reinforcement on the back end. Mitchell will be a day-one starter.

    20. Pittsburgh Steelers- Graham Barton | G | Duke

    Arthur Smith and Co. are on a quest to straighten this Steelers offense out, and protecting Russ is a strong first order of business. Barton is adored by those in the league, and Pittsburgh feels they got a bonafide steal landing him at 20.

    21. San Francisco 49ers (via MIA)- Brian Thomas Jr. | WR | LSU

    A Veteran WR trade on draft night! Titans fans know how that goes, right? Sorry. Anyways, The Bills choose to be aggressive in replacing Stefon Diggs by trading for Brandon Aiyuk with the 49ers. They send San Francisco their first-round pick (28) in exchange for Aiyuk, who they sign to a long-term contract. Josh Allen gets an ascending, versatile WR1.

    Meanwhile, the 49ers send picks 28 (via BUF) and 94 to Miami for pick 21 to draft Aiyuk’s replacement. Thomas Jr. is a bigger and faster receiver than Aiyuk, but far more raw and has some medical unknowns. He fills San Fran’s need for a boundary threat on offense.

    22. Philadelphia Eagles- Cooper DeJean | CB | Iowa

    The great white hope is headed to Philadephia. Yes, a white cornerback. No, it’s not 1927. DeJean is a freak athlete with versatility anywhere in the secondary, a portion of the Eagles’ roster that has turned into a bit of a nursing home. He is a very welcome infusion of youth.

    23. Arizona Cardinals (via MIN)- Laiatu Latu | EDGE | UCLA

    The Cardinals go with edge rush help in their second at-bat this round. Latu is a Tasmanian devil when he’s healthy, the most natural rusher in the class. But he also recently retired from football due to a serious neck injury. His medical status is what will dictate if he goes as high as the first 15 picks or falls precipitously.

    24. Dallas Cowboys- Terrion Arnold | CB | Alabama

    The Cowboys select CB2 to fill the void in their secondary left behind by Stephon Gilmore’s departure. With Trevon Diggs returning from a season-ending injury this year, Arnold can help hold down the fort and lend to a strong tandem once Diggs is back to full-speed.

    25. Green Bay Packers- Tyler Guyton | OT | Oklahoma

    The Packers organization is nothing if not patient, and they select a player who could use a bit of it. Guyton is the 7th tackle off the board and will be a strong starter for them eventually.

    26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Jackson Powers-Johnson | OC | Oregon

    There’s been a decent amount of smoke revolving around the Bucs and a center this cycle, and Powers-Johnson is just the guy for the job. The Senior Bowl standout will be a starter on Day 1.

    27. Arizona Cardinals- Johnny Newton | DL | Illinois

    For the Cardinals’ third and final act (of this round), they select Newton to be the centerpiece of their defensive front. Adding him and Latu to their pass rush would be about as strong an upgrade as you could muster in one draft.

    28. San Francisco 49ers (via BUF)- Darius Robinson | EDGE | Missouri

    The Niners take Darius Robinson with their 2nd selection. His versatility would go a long way in helping replace Arik Armstead up front, who they lost in free agency.

    29. Detroit Lions- Kool-Aid McKinstry | CB | Alabama

    The Lions suddenly have a big hole at CB2 after having to cut Cam Sutton this offseason, and McKinstry fills that need. They pair him with his old college teammate Brian Branch to form a nasty tandem in the secondary.

    30. Baltimore Ravens- Patrick Paul | OT | Houston

    The Ravens have a big need at tackle, and they fill it with… well, a really big tackle. I think Paul will ultimately sneak into the 1st round as the 8th tackle off the board. Teams hoping to land a starting tackle in round 2 are starting to get rather nervous…

    31. Miami Dolphins (via SF)- Jordan Morgan | G | Arizona

    The Dolphins land Jordan Morgan at 31 after trading back. A college tackle who will be an interior lineman in the NFL, Morgan is a huge help to a team that needs bodies inside in a bad way.

    32. Kansas City Chiefs- Adonai Mitchell | WR | Texas

    A pick that will leave the rest of the league groaning, The Chiefs take Mitchell with the hopes they can get the best out of him. Landing with another team would leave me guessing he’d be a bust. With the Chiefs, I’m guessing he becomes phenomenal.

    Titans 7-Round Mock Draft 2.0

    Round 1, Pick 11 (via ARI)

    Olu Fashanu | OT | Penn St.

    Ola Fashanu is the best pass-blocking tackle in this class with a bullet. He glides across the field in pass pro, there’s a majesty in the way such a big powerful frame manages to float gracefully across the grass. The Titans could use a player like that very, very badly. His shortcoming is as a run blocker, where he’s inconsistent and struggles with proper technique. I have little doubt an OL guru like Bill Callahan can’t whip a player with Fashanu’s skillset into shape as a pass blocker, however. He has the size, the athleticism, the raw power. If he becomes even an average blocker in the ground game, his ceiling is sky-high.

    Round 2, Pick 38

    Junior Colson | LB | Michigan

    Colson is the best linebacker in an otherwise weak class for my money. He’s got a pro-style game, doing just about everything at a B+/A- level. No one element of his game is going to necessarily wow you, but he’s one of the only linebackers this year who could be relied upon as a day 1 starter wearing the green dot. He met with the Titans privately in the pre-draft process and is a Nashville area native.

    Round 3, Pick 66 (via ARI)

    Ruke Orhorhoro | DL | Clemson

    Ruke Orhorhoro is precisely what the Titans could use to compliment Big Jeff in the middle of the defensive front. At 6’4 and 294lbs, he’s got a high floor as a run-stuffing defensive tackle. He needs to improve his pass-rushing arsenal at the next level but has all of the requisite athleticism to make it happen. He’s a versatile player who can win with speed and power and rarely whiffs on a tackle.

    Round 3, Pick 90 (via ARI)

    Malik Washington | WR | Virginia

    Malik Washington is an undersized spitfire who accounted for practically all of Virginia’s offense last year. His play style is reminiscent of a value Zay Flowers, whose game translated to the NFL immediately last season.

    Washington’s game has all the right stuff: explosiveness, toughness, strong ball skills and body control, and impressive tracking ability. in 2023, he tallied 1,426 yards and 9 touchdowns on an otherwise bad team. He led the ACC in receiving last year and broke numerous school records. His play strength leaves a bit to be desired and he lacks great long speed, but I don’t see how he can’t be a rotational contributor (as well as a punt returner) at worst as a rookie in the NFL.

    Round 4, Pick 106

    Jarvis Brownlee Jr. | CB | Louisville

    I’ve been a big fan of Jarvis Brownlee Jr. since I watched him work at the Senior Bowl. What he lacks in size and length, he makes up for with a vicious and tenacious play style. He plays the corner position in the exact mold of the kind of guy Dennard Wilson wants, which is why I wasn’t surprised to see they brought him in on a 30 visit.

    Round 5, Pick 146

    Jalyx Hunt | EDGE | Houston Baptist

    The Titans need help at the EDGE position, and there’s a lot to like about what Hunt brings to the table. He’s got an unteachable set of raw skills: power, length, and explosiveness. They’re rather unrefined and need the right touch. I’m guessing Dennard Wilson and company wouldn’t mind getting their hands on him, as he was one of their 30 visits despite playing at a small school like Houston Baptist.

    Round 6, Pick 182

    Rasheen Ali | RB | Marshall

    The Titans have made it clear in the pre-draft process that they’re interested in a running back, as they used a handful of their 30 visits on the position. Ali was one of those visitors, which caught my eye. He was highly productive in college, putting up 1400+ yards and 15 touchdowns in his final season. Durability is a bit of a concern, but he’d be the third back in Tennessee as a part of their stable. He has strong vision and a sharp cut for a late-round back.

    Round 7, Pick 242

    Kingsley Eguakun | OC | Florida

    Eguakun presents serious bargain upside late in this draft. He fought to come back from an ankle injury during the entirety of his 2023 season and never played at close to 100%. That means teams are reliant on his underclassmen tape and senior bowl performance to determine what his best could be. He lacks the length or power profile to be drafted higher than Day 3, but the unknown is enticing enough to take a swing. Those in the know mention his leadership skills as a real plus, something you love in a center prospect.

    Round 7, Pick 252

    Ethan Driskell | OT | Marshall

    Driskell has Bill Callahan late round flyer written all over him. He’s a mountain of a man at 6’8 313lbs, but he has the functional movement skills of a smaller man. His leverage will always be a point of contention for him, but he’s got all the necessary ingredients to become a good swing tackle with the right coaching.

    Author: Easton Freezeis a Nashville native who loves covering the NFL. He is the host of The Hot Read Podcast, and when he isn't watching or covering sports, he's spending time with friends and family.

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