With the 8th pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the Tennessee Titans select…

Thanks to a 1-8 finish, the Tennessee Titans ended their once-promising but ultimately disappointing 2010 campaign with a 6-10 record. As a consolation prize for their inept play during the second half of the season, the Titans are now the rightful owners of a top ten draft selection in the 2011 NFL Draft.

That’s right folks, with pick #8, the Titans will have a chance to grab a blue-chipper who can hopefully step right in and become a contributor from day one.

With several months to go and events such as the Senior Bowl, Combine and Pro Days looming on the immediate and not-so-immediate horizon, we’ll have plenty of time to discuss what the Titans will do with their high first round selection.

Let’s take the first of many looks at what the Titans may have in mind with their shiny, new top-ten draft pick.

Quarterback

With the future of Vince Young in a Titans’ uniform up in the air, there’s at least a fighter’s chance of the team deciding to go with a signal-caller at pick #8.

Unfortunately, Andrew Luck will be long gone by the time the Titans are on the clock, but considering the depth of this year’s QB class, the Titans should still have a shot at a potential franchise gunslinger with their first rounder, if they choose to go in that direction.

Ryan Mallett has great size and a strong arm and should be around when the Titans pick. The same can also be said about Missouri’s Blaine Gabbert, who just announced that he’s entering the draft and according to some, could end up being the #2 QB prospect behind Luck. Other possibilities include Washington’s Jake Locker and Auburn’s Cam Newton, a guy I mentioned several weeks ago as a potential Titan draftee.

Defensive Tackle

As Andrew’s recent article indicates, the Titans could use some girth at the DT position. If Albert Haynesworth isn’t reacquired, I agree with Andrew that a big body is certainly needed to help stop the run.

Auburn’s Nick Fairley and Alabama’s Marcell Dareus are two talented big men who may be available. Both guys are capable of not only stopping the run but also getting after opposing quarterbacks.

Another guy who I’m sure we’ll hear more about is Oregon State’s Stephen Paea, a 310 pounder with a great motor who’s also as strong as an oxe.

Outside linebacker

Considering Gerald McRath’s sophomore slump and David Thornton’s uncertain future, the Titans may decide to add an explosive talent at OLB with their first selection.

If they decide to embark upon that path, the guy that they could become enamored with is UCLA’s Akeem Ayers. He’s a playmaking 6’4″ 255 lb. specimen who’s strong and versatile and could emerge as an intriguing candidate with selection #8.

Any feedback regarding the players/positions that I mentioned? Other players you’d like to see the Titans pursue with their first-rounder?

Feel free to provide your always welcomed feedback below.

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