NASHVILLE, Tenn. —The Titans/Oilers franchise has picked from the ninth spot just once but landed franchise pillar Bruce Matthews from the spot in 1983.
|Bruce Matthews played 19 seasons in his Hall of Fame career. Click here for a slideshow of his time in Oilers and Titans uniforms.|
Matthews experienced just about everything a player could during his 19 seasons that included 14 straight Pro Bowls (1988-2001) and seven first-team All-Pro selections. In addition to those franchise records, he also leads with 296 games, 232 consecutive games and 229 consecutive starts.
The selection of Matthews marked the second of three consecutive years in which the Houston Oilers drafted an offensive lineman in the first round (Mike Munchak, picked eighth in 1982; Dean Steinkuhler, picked second in 1984). Matthews helped the Oilers emerge from four sub-.500 seasons to make the playoffs seven consecutive seasons (1987-93). He experienced all of the team's move from Houston to Tennessee and its first season as the Titans that included the 1999 AFC Championship and appearance in Super Bowl XXXIV.
Matthews played all five positions remarkably without compromising talent. He made most of his starts at guard (99 at left and 67 at right guard), but also started 87 games at center, 22 at right tackle and 17 at left tackle.
Matthews became the first player who has worn a Tennessee Titans uniform to be inducted to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2007.
Matthews is preparing for his third season as offensive line coach of the Titans. Tennessee is scheduled to pick 10th in this year's NFL Draft on April 25. Click here to visit Titans Draft Central.