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Titans Draft '24

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Former NFL GM Mark Dominik Has a "Dark Horse" Pick for the Titans at No. 7


NASHVILLE – A week away from the NFL Draft, most draft analysts have the Titans taking a tackle or a receiver with the 7th overall pick.

Former NFL General Manager Mark Dominik, speaking on a SiriusXM NFL Radio conference call on Thursday, thinks that's a scenario that could play out for Tennessee in the first round.

Dominik, however, threw out "dark horse" for the Titans at 7.

"If it's down to tackle and receiver, then I think they'll take the tackle," Dominik said. "I think the receiver class is deep enough where you could go to round 2, especially with what they have done at receiver with (Calvin) Ridley and (DeAndre) Hopkins, and (Treylon) Burks. I just don't think that is going to be the fit that they're looking for.

But …

"My dark horse is Brock Bowers," Dominik said. "If he's available, I think he's going to go over the tackle for the Titans."

Bowers, of course, has been linked to the Titans since February, when the Georgia tight end got a lot of attention Super Bowl week when naming the Titans as a team he'd like to play for in the NFL.

Bowers chuckled when asked about it a few weeks later at the NFL Combine, while indicating he met with the Titans – and plenty of other teams – in Indianapolis.

"I met with the Titans, and it went good, I thought," Bowers said from Indianapolis.

Bowers said he mentioned the Titans during an interview with Pro Football Talk (PFT Live) on Super Bowl Radio Row in Las Vegas because it's "a cool place to live. Nashville, Tennessee, it would be cool."

Dominik, who worked in a NFL front office role for 20 seasons, 19 of them with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, could see a scenario where the Titans pick Bowers.

"I think that's a piece that (the Titans) need badly," Dominik said of Bowers, who became the first two-time John Mackey Award winner. In 35 games with the Bulldogs, Bowers recorded the most receptions (175), receiving yards (2,538) and receiving touchdowns (26) by a tight end in SEC history.

"I'm a huge fan of Brock Bowers, and I think he's very low in a lot of peoples' mock drafts. I think he is going to go easily in the top 10 in my opinion. And so, I think if he is available, that's the direction I would go (at 7) and then come back in the second round and take the tackle in the second round, because the tackle draft class is a lot stronger. I think there's going to be 8 to 10 tackles taken in the top 50-60 players."

Dominik first served as a pro personnel assistant and scout, then as the team's Director of Scouting, with the Buccaneers before ultimately being named the franchise's General Manager. His five draft classes as the Buccaneers GM produced four All-Rookie team members, three Pro Bowlers, and 13 players who started a minimum of three years for the franchise.

Dominik, who will be a draft analyst on the SiriusXM NFL Radio and SiriusXM College Sports Radio channels, further explained his reasoning for picking Bowers over a tackle like Notre Dame's Joe Alt.

Dominik said he considers Marvin Harrison Jr. "way better" than receivers Malik Nabers and Rome Odunze, but as it relates to the Titans, he thinks receiver is "a luxury" and not a need. Dominik said he'd rather see the Titans take two tackles or fill another need over taking another receiver for 2024. And, he said he won't be surprised if the team doesn't take a single receiver in this year's draft.

"I think the value in this draft class is offensive tackle, especially early, like top 50 picks," Dominik said. "If I can walk out with Bowers and still end up with a tackle like (Oklahoma's Tyler) Guyton that I like, that I trust, that I could possibly play out there Week One, or a Patrick Paul (from Houston) or Jordan Morgan (from Arizona), that feels better than the opposite where maybe I get (Texas tight end Ja'Tavion) Sanders, because really there's only two tight ends in this class that are going to go high, and Alt. Alt is very safe, as we all know, and there is nothing wrong with that. But I feel like my combination of Brock and that fifth tackle or sixth tackle or seventh tackle on the board, I think it will be more powerful for this team. I don't dislike (current Titans tackle) Nicholas Petit-Frere, but I don't know if he is going to make it in terms of his physicality. But I can put Nick out there. So the need is there. But when you look at the tight end room, Chig (Okonkwo) is the only really tight end, and then you have (Josh) Whyle, who hasn't really had the opportunity. Chig, to me, just goes back to some of the stuff we're worried about at tight end, sometimes he just drops balls he shouldn't drop.

"I think for a young quarterback (like Will Levis), to have that tight end that says, 'Hey, I can run screens.' We're not protecting very well, and I could just dump the ball off here all day long and get six, seven, eight yards. I think it just makes a lot of sense, and I trust my combination if I walk out with Bowers and Jordan Morgan rather than I walk out with Alt and another position because Sanders went higher than I thought he was going to go and I just didn't get him."

The NFL Draft begins next Thursday in Detroit.

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