Best Player Available? Titans GM Jon Robinson Talks NFL Draft


NASHVILLE, Tenn. – It's been a busy stretch for general manager Jon Robinson and the Titans.

In free agency, the team has signed eight players. The Titans have also re-signed five of their own, including three to long-term deals. In March, the Titans parted ways with six players.

Next up is the NFL Draft, which begins next Thursday.

With so many holes filled, is this a "Best Player Available" draft for the Titans at pick No.25?

"Yeah, I think that's what we'll probably try to do – take the best player that fits our football team and hopefully fills a need," Robinson said. "There will be a good player there at 25, and if there is somebody within striking distance we'll maneuver and get ourselves up. Or, we could potentially slide back."

Robinson made his comments at the NFL owners meetings, and that was before another wave of free agency signings. So Robinson likes his position, even though he's picking much later compared to his previous two drafts with the team.

Earlier this offseason, Robinson said "my phone line is always open" in regards to a potential trade in the draft.

"We'll certainly have a lot more time to just sort of sit back and watch, but we'll be aggressive as well," Robinson said. "If there is a player that we really, really (like). … Maybe we thought he was going to go in the top 10 and for whatever reason maybe he is slipping down the board, we'll try and position ourselves to maybe acquire the guy. Or if we get action on our pick at 25, and a team wants to come up to our pick so that we trade back, I think I have proven that I am willing to trade."

Robinson and the Titans were aggressive early in free agency.

At the start, the Titans signed cornerback Malcolm Butler and running back Dion Lewis, a pair of former Patriots. Then the team added a pair of interior linemen in Kevin Pamphile (Buccaneers) and Xavier Su'a-Filo (Texans). The Titans signed back-up quarterback Blaine Gabbert (Cardinals) at the end of March. More recently the Titans added inside linebacker Will Compton (Redskins), defensive lineman Bennie Logan (Chiefs) and receiver/return man Michael Campanaro (Ravens).

Robinson, who's heading into his third NFL Draft as the team's GM, has proven he's not afraid to be aggressive in the draft.

In his first two seasons with the Titans, Robinson has made 10 trades, many of them in the draft.

Titans controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk said she's excited about this year's draft, and the possibilities with Robinson at the controls.

"I talk to Jon about what his thoughts are, but it changes so fast this time of year," Strunk said at the owners meetings. "He tells you one thing and then he is off on another by the time the draft gets there. So I don't get too carried away with it until it's really close.

"You never know with Jon. There could be moves down or up or anything. What I find exciting is watching Jon at work in the draft room. It is action-packed fun. I'm looking forward to it." looks back at some of the team's #1 draft picks over the years. (AP Photos)

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