Titans pass on drafting defensive lineman for first time since 2005

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Heading into the draft, one of my biggest questions about the Tennessee Titans roster was about how much they like what they have on the defensive line.

Big guys up front are always tempting, especially early on when the elite ones don’t last long.

But the Titans showed they are very happy with their group. For the first time since 2005, the franchise didn’t draft a single defensive lineman.

“All positions were discussed when players were being picked off the board,” coach Mike Mularkey said on The Wake Up Zone radio show Tuesday. “And where we were, we felt like we were all set at that position. Obviously we’ve got some (college) free agents and we’ll have some tryout players at the rookie minicamp. Maybe we’ll find someone there again that can bolster the depth at that position”

A day earlier on The Midday 180 program, GM Jon Robinson said once the team added Sylvester Williams as the nose tackle to replace the cut Al Woods, the D-line qualified as one of the team’s “stronger groups.”

Two-time Pro Bowler Jurrell Casey is the centerpiece of that group, playing end in the base 3-4 and tackle in the four-man nickel front. Ascending DaQuan Jones (6-foot-4, 322-pounds) is on the other side with Williams now in the middle.

Jones played some at tackle in the nickel next to Casey, where Karl Klug is also a factor. He’s coming off a ruptured Achilles.

Angelo Blackson, a 2015 fourth-rounder, and Austin Johnson, a 2016 second-rounder, are key depth and rotation players. And a couple quality undrafted free agents from last year, end Mehdi Abdesmad (who finished on injured reserve) and nose Antwaun Woods, made strong showings.