Titans GM Jon Robinson Credits Dad for Trade Background


NASHVILLE, Tenn. —  Five trades in seven months.

New Titans general manager Jon Robinson has proven quickly he isn't afraid to make a deal.

It runs in the family.

The most recent example of Robinson's wheeling and dealing played out this morning, when the Titans traded receiver Dorial Green-Beckham to the Philadelphia Eagles in exchange for versatile offensive lineman Dennis Kelly.

While Robinson learned plenty at previous NFL stops with the Patriots and Buccaneers, the Union City native said he first learned the tricks of trade at a young age, by watching his dad.

"He's bought and sold hunting dogs, tractors, guns, knives, cars, boats – you name it,'' Robinson said of his father, Don. "I'll never forget, we used to go to James R. Cash auctions, state auctions and farm auctions, and we would buy hay rakes and bush hogs and all that kinds of stuff.

"Just to watch him haggle back and forth with people, it was kind of fun. And yeah, that sticks with you."

Robinson's memory takes him back to when he was anywhere from six to 10 years old. From his father's truck, the two listened to the Swap Shop at noon on 1240-WENK in Union City.

"I can't tell you how many things we bought while riding in that truck,'' Robinson said.

The experience stuck with him.

"(My dad) would generally come out on top,'' Robinson said, "or at least walk away thinking he came away with a good deal."

Robinson made Tuesday's trade in an effort to increase competition on an offensive line in charge of protecting quarterback Marcus Mariota, while also clearing holes for the running backs.

Robinson's previous four trades since taking over in January have panned out well so far:

• The Titans swapped fourth-round picks with the Eagles in exchange for running back DeMarco Murray, the NFL's Offensive Player of the Year in 2014 while with the Cowboys. Murray was impressive in the preseason opener on Saturday night, running for 93 yards, including a 71-yard touchdown run.

• Robinson traded the No.1 pick of the draft to the Los Angeles Rams for the 15th overall pick in the draft, two second-round picks (43 and 45), and a third-rounder (76) in 2016. The Titans also received the Rams' first-round pick in 2017, along with their third-round pick in next year's draft. It put the team in a position to make further moves, and build the roster with multiple picks.

• The Titans traded the 15th and the 76th overall pick, along with a second-round pick in 2017, to move up in the draft to land Michigan State tackle Jack Conklin with the eight overall pick. The Titans also received the Browns' sixth-round pick, No. 176. Conklin has performed well in training camp, and is on track to start as a rookie.

• On the third day of the draft, the Titans traded with the Broncos and acquired cornerbacks LeShaun Sims (5th round, 157) and Kalan Reed (seventh round, 253rd) in exchange for the 176th pick of the draft and a sixth round pick in 2017. Sims and Reed have been impressive in training camp.

The trade with the Eagles got plenty of attention across the NFL on Tuesday.

Kelly has played in 30 games, with 15 starts, after being selected by the Eagles in the fifth round 2012 NFL Draft. Kelly has started nine games at right tackle and three games at right guard and three games at left guard during his career. The 6-foot-8, 321-pounder played at Purdue.

"I like his versatility,'' Robinson said of Kelly. "He has really good size, he's versatile, he's played a lot of positions. He embodies the traits we look for in an offensive lineman – smart, tough, and dependable."

Green-Beckham was a second-round pick by the Titans last year, and he had his moments in 2015. Throughout training camp, however, coaches have talked about his struggles with consistency.

Robinson decided it was time to make another move.

"Not to speak on Philly's behalf, but they inquired about it,'' Robinson said. "They thought it was a good opportunity for him, and we thought adding Dennis would be good for our football team. We are moving on. I appreciate everything Dorial did when he was here. He bought in to what we are trying to do. But in the end we felt like this was the best decision for the team."

Titans head coach Mike Mularkey and GM Jon Robinson introduced to reporters at Saint Thomas Sports Park. (Donn Jones Photography)

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