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Titans Draft '24

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Titans Select Alabama Tackle JC Latham in First Round of NFL Draft


DETROIT – JC Latham had a plan.

On one of the biggest nights of his life, the University of Alabama tackle knew his name would be called in the NFL Draft, but he didn't know exactly when.

He also knew NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell recently had back surgery.

So, when the Titans picked Latham with the seventh overall pick on Thursday night, Latham had controlled excitement while giving Goodell a big bear hug, lifting him off the ground.

"(Goodell) told me when I picked him up, don't pick him up by the low back because that's where he had the surgery," Latham said after being picked. "So, I made sure I went up top. … Hopefully he's OK. If not, I apologize. I hope he is (good)."

Latham said it was a great moment when the Titans called him.

"It was crazy," Latham said. "I didn't shed a tear. I just felt a sigh of relief, that this whole process is officially over. I am officially a professional player now. I almost shed a tear – my mom said my great grandma would be really proud of me, so that means a lot to me.

"It's amazing (to be a Titan). I am ready to get to work. It means a lot for a team, an organization to trust me with the pick and I want to build on that trust, build on that foundation, and hit the ground running."

Latham (6-6, 242) played in 41 games at Alabama over the past three seasons, with 27 starts. He was a first team All-SEC selection in 2023, when he started all 14 games at right tackle. Latham was also a second team Associated Press All-American in 2023.

According to Pro Football Focus, Latham allowed just two sacks in 970 career pass blocking snaps in his career.

Titans GM Ran Carthon told reporters in Nashville the plan is for Latham to start out at left tackle in Tennessee.

Carthon also told reporters in Nashville the Titans had a lot of calls at 7, but unless the team heard an offer that was going to blow them away, the team was going to stay put because the team wanted JC Latham.

Carthon said the team felt the Chargers would take tackle Joe Alt at 5, which they did.

"There's not many people that walk the earth that are his height and weight and can move at his fluidity," Brian Callahan said of Latham. "He's a really unique player which is why he gets picked in the top seven picks of the draft. I'm just—I can't wait to get him out there. He makes us a physically imposing, really left side of our offensive line when you put him with Peter (Skoronski) and Cush (Lloyd Cushenberry) and those guys. We've kind of taken some nice steps into really improving that unit."

Latham said he had an "amazing" visit with the Titans during the pre-draft process, when he made the trip to Nashville.

He spent several hours with his new offensive line coach, Bill Callahan. Latham said he made a total of 12 30 visits during the pre-draft process.

"I sat down one-on-one with (coach Callahan), just going over different techniques, pass pro, run blocking," Latham said. "And then getting background information on who we both were, and then talking about the potential I have, and how I can capitalize on the ability I've been given.

"Absolutely (I can play left tackle)," Latham continued. "I was trained at left all my life, and I get to Bama and Evan Neal, a top 10 pick, he was at left so I went to right. … Going back to left, I've been training all this offseason, so I'm ready to go."

Latham said he talked to Carthon, Titans head coach Brian Callahan and several others on the phone back in Nashville when he was informed the team would be picking him.

Not long after being selected, he was also on the phone with Titans quarterback Will Levis.

"That's the level of trust right there," Latham said. "That's the guy I am picked to protect. He told me he was really excited – he was with Peter Skoronski, the guy they picked last year, the left guard. He was watching the draft with him. They were really excited and geeked up, and ready to work.

"(My mindset) is to be the hardest worker. You are going into a profession where first you have to establish the trust and respect of your peers amongst you. There's a lot of vets in the building that I want them to have the confidence where they can trust me. I want to be the first one in, the last to leave, keep going further as the team gets to where we want to get to."

The Titans are scheduled to make their next pick on Friday in the second round (38th overall) of the draft.

The Titans selected Alabama tackle JC Latham in the first round of Thursday night's NFL Draft. Latham was taken with the seventh overall pick.


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