NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Titans have added "another strong evaluator" with the hiring of Ryan Cowden as the team's Director of Player Personnel.
With the Titans, Cowden will oversee all areas of the scouting department, both college and pro, including advance scouting, free agency preparation, evaluating players in the NFL and all other professional leagues, as well as assisting with college scouting and preparation for the NFL Draft.
He joins the Titans after 16 years with the Carolina Panthers.
Titans general manager Jon Robinson is plenty familiar with the role – and Cowden. Prior to joining the Titans, Robinson had the same title for two seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Prior to that, Robinson spent 12 seasons with the New England Patriots, including from 2009-2013 as director of college scouting.
"Ryan will oversee both pro and college scouting," Robinson said. "When I was first hired by the Patriots, Ryan was promoted by Carolina to handle the Southeast and we cut our teeth together in that region scouting. We were both learning the ropes, going to many of the same places and had a lot of interaction through the years on the road. He has a strong eye for talent, he has developed good managerial skills over the years and in the team-building process it will be nice to get his take, as they have put together very good teams there in Carolina over the years. I like the combination of our experiences in the league and on a personal level I have always trusted and respected him."
In Carolina, Cowden last held the title of Assistant Director of College Scouting, a position he held for two years. Prior to his current role, he served as the team's National Scout/Senior College Scout for two years (2012-14) and was a national scout for the Panthers for the five previous seasons (2008-12). He originally joined the Carolina franchise as a scouting assistant in 2000. He became an area scout in 2001, and was responsible for the southeast area from 2001-07. In his time with the Panthers, the franchise won two NFC titles, five division crowns and advanced to the playoffs six times.
Robinson and Cowden will work closely with director of pro scouting Brian Gardner and director of college scouting Blake Beddingfield.
"I think the director of player personnel position is an important one as we move forward. I look forward to discussions and meetings with Ryan, Blake (Beddingfield), Brian (Gardner) and all our scouts as we continue to build this roster. We have added another strong evaluator to the mix and I am anxious to get him involved."
Additionally, the Titans moved current personnel to new roles. Dale Thompson will now be scouting the West Coast region, Brandon Taylor will scout the Southeast, Wes Slay will handle the Midwest and Dennis Polian will be a pro scout. Scouts Marv Sunderland and Mike Yowarsky will not be returning.