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Has Titans GM Narrowed List of Candidates for No.1 Pick?


NASHVILLE, Tenn. —Titans general manager Jon Robinson still has nearly two months to decide on the player he likes best for the first overall pick in the NFL Draft.

So, after the NFL Combine, has he narrowed the list of potential candidates to a few?

"I would say it is not 20, but it is more than one,'' Robinson said with a half-smile on Friday. "A lot of the guys that didn't go to the Senior Bowl, our first exposure with those guys on a personal level was that 15-minute session in Indianapolis (at the combine). So there's a lot more work to be done, getting to know the players, before narrowing that list to two or three guys. There's just a lot more work to be done."

In addition to watching the workouts in Indianapolis, Robinson, coach Mike Mularkey and other team officials conducted 15-minute interviews with 60 prospects at the combine. In the coming months, they'll meet with players individually at Saint Thomas Sports Park, and at Pro Days.

Ole Miss tackle Laremy Tunsil, Florida State defensive back Jalen Ramsey, and Ohio State defensive lineman Joey Bosa are among the players who've been linked to the Titans in mock drafts.

Robinson said the team has to make sure the player picked in the first round is a good fit on and off the field. Among the areas the team is focusing on in the draft and free agency, which begins next week, includes "the offensive line, playmakers on offense, and players who can help us get off the field on third down on defense,'' Robinson said.

"The most important thing is: Are they going to make an impact on our football team on the field. But I would say 1A is: Are they going to embody the traits that Mike and I have laid out with being tough, coachable, team-first guys, guys that are dependable guys on and off the field,'' Robinson said.

"It is as much their personality and fit here as people as it is on the field. I'm not saying we want a roster of 53 Boy Scouts -- and that's not a dig at the Boy Scouts -- but there's no question that's a big part of it. Do they embody everything we stand for as Titans?'

The first wave of interviews provided some nice clues, Robinson said.

Robinson was hired as general manager of the Titans in January after spending the past two seasons as director of player personnel with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Prior to that, Robinson worked as New England's director of college scouting (2009-13) after serving as a regional scout and an area scout for the Patriots.

In addition to players being considered for the first overall pick, the Titans also interviewed players who could be considered in later rounds.

"It was a good introductory session with the guys, kind of getting to know their personalities a little bit, how well they articulate their thoughts. Not necessarily how well-spoken they are, but did they come across as guys who can handle themselves in a professional manner? It was a balance of personal, background, personality information gathering coupled with the Xs and Os stuff football-wise,'' Robinson said.

"We tried to see what they were taught to do at their respective schools and talked them through certain scenarios or plays, if you will, with our team and how well they can articulate that back to us."


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