The latest installment of our ongoing series of positional analyses will take a look at how the Tennessee Titans stack up at cornerback.
The team appears to be in good hands at the starting CB spots, which are manned by emerging stud Cortland “Feisty” Finnegan and solid vet Nick Harper. However, outside of those two, there’s a motley crew of vets and youngsters that will be competing for spots behind the starters.
The offseason ushered in the departures of Chris Carr and Eric King, two guys who were solid backups at the CB position in 2008. As we approach 2009, let’s ponder the following question: Will the likes of rookie Ryan Mouton, oft-injured Cary Williams and oft-toasted DeMarcus Faggins help replenish the depth that was lost via free agency?
My answer to that question and more…after the jump.
Cortland Finnegan is a testament to how far hard work, dedication and the will to achieve can take you in the NFL. Arriving into the league via a humble beginning as a seventh-round draft selection, Finny has quickly become one of the league’s best cover corners.
In addition to his excellent cover skills, the diminutive yet daunting Finnegan isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty by stepping up and making tackles in run support.
Finny is a complete corner and is without question one of the team’s brightest stars.
Veteran Nick Harper will turn 35 as the ’09 NFL season begins. Though aging, he’s still a solid cover guy who should provide the Titans with at least another year of adequate service.
The guys with something to prove
The next two corners are players who will have to answer the question marks that surround their chances of making an impact in ’09.
Second-year CB Cary Williams has to prove that he can stay healthy over the course of an entire season. His rookie year was permeated with nagging ailments that prevented him from playing for most of 2008.
Williams is a talented guy with a nice combination of size/speed, and if he’s able to stay healthy, could compete for some playing time in ’09.
The question mark surrounding newcomer DeMarcus Faggins is whether or not he can be an effective corner. During his days as a Houston Texan, “Petey” was known for being an inconsistent player, which is probably a compliment compared to what many Texan fans have said about him.
Hopefully, a change of scenery can lead to better results for Petey as a Titan.
Ryan Mouton is an undersized but talented corner who was selected in the third round of this year’s NFL Draft. In addition to his solid ball skills, Mouton’s also versatile enough to be in the running as a returner on special teams.
Like Mouton, Jason McCourty is also one of the team’s rookie corners who will be competing for a roster spot in ’09. Similar to Mouton, McCourty is also one of the guys vying for a role on special teams as a returner.
Barring injuries to the vets in front of them, 2009 should serve as a developmental year for both Mouton and McCourty.
Tanard Davis has been cut by five teams since arriving in the NFL in 2006. There’s a good chance that the Titans will become the sixth team to introduce Davis to the Turk later this month.
Rookie Jeremy Haynes was signed as an undrafted free agent in April. Making the team’s practice squad should be his primary goal.
Your turn Titan fans…What are your thoughts regarding the CB position?