NASHVILLE – The Titans selected Virginia Tech cornerback Caleb Farley in the first round of Thursday night's NFL Draft.
Farley was taken with the 22nd overall pick.
Heading into the draft, Farley was regarded as a top pick, but a back injury put him in a position to land with the Titans, who snatched him up.
"I think it would be a home-run hit, and the reason he is there is because of the back (injury)," NFL Network draft analyst Charles Davis said of Farley, and the Titans, leading up to the draft. "If there is no back surgery, I think he is already gone. He may even be the first corner off the board.
"If (Farley) somehow gets down to 22, and the Titans, with a history of having some patience with big-time players, witness Jeffery Simmons, that makes sense to me. And I don't think you'll to wait as long with him. To get an elite guy at 22, who could easily be a top 10 pick, would be great for (the Titans)."
NFL Network draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah rated Farley as one of the top five players in the draft, but thought he'd slide a bit. Jeremiah pointed out "the Titans were rewarded for stopping Jeffery Simmons' slide a couple years ago (because of an injury), and things could play out similarly in this scenario" with Farley.
In 23 games over two seasons at Virginia Tech, the 6-foot-2, 197-pound Farley had six interceptions. But he's had two back surgeries, and he also suffered a knee injury while in college.
Farley initially suffered the back injury during workouts leading up to the 2019 season. He played through the injury and earned first team All-ACC honors with four interceptions and 12 pass breakups, but was forced to sit out Tech's final two games. He also suffered a torn ACL in 2017.
"If you are comfortable with him medically -- he was like my fifth or sixth player in the draft. He's a freak show," Jeremiah said of Farley. "If they give you the okay and he passes, shoot, that would be a home run pick if he shows up and he's healthy. … He's got rare movement and skills for a big corner like that. I think he's the most talented corner in the whole draft."
The Titans are scheduled to make eight more picks over the next two days of the draft, including three on Friday night – pick No.53 overall (2nd round), and picks 85 and 100 in the third round.
With the 22nd pick, the Tennessee Titans select Virginia Tech CB Caleb Farley. (AP Images)