The Tennessee Titans traded up for the second time in as many rounds, jumping from 57 to 41 overall in the second round to take Boston College outside linebacker Harold Landry.
In doing so, Titans general manager Jon Robinson added a player in the second round that had a first-round grade on their draft board, making the deal worth it, according to the GM. Tennessee traded up Thursday, giving up their fourth-round choice to Baltimore to move three spots for Alabama inside linebacker Rashaan Evans.
“These are two guys that certainly were worthy of going in the first round. One we took one that for whatever reason slipped out. It happens,” Robinson said. “But as Coach (Mike) Vrabel has said, and I believe in, it doesn’t matter where you come from, it doesn’t matter where you’re picked, you’ve got to come in here and work and earn it. And I know both of these guys are going to do that.”
Robinson said the Titans had been working since early in the day Friday to find a way to move up to take Landry, and finally found a trade partner in the Raiders. Tennessee gave Oakland its own second-round pick, plus its third-round choice at No. 89 overall. That leaves the Titans with a fifth-round choice at No. 162 and two sixth-rounders, Nos. 199 and 215.
“We were fortunate that he was there for us in the top of the second. He wouldn’t have been there at 57 I don’t think. We found a willing trade partner in Oakland and moved up and took him, Robinson said. “We started working this morning. Started putting out some feelers and seeing if we could find a willing partner to move.”
Landry was impressive in his private workout with Vrabel, enough that the coach recommended him to Robinson as one of the Titans’ 30 pre-draft visitors.
“When I came back, I said, I think we need to bring this guy in. I think you need to spend a lot of time with him. Jon met with him for a while and he came away feeling really good about him,” Vrabel said.
Landry said he was not overly disappointed at falling out of the first round, and believes the Titans are the right fit fo him.
“To be honest with you, there’s a lot of expectations and this and that, but I don’t think any of that matters. Tennessee on my visit and working out with Coach Vrabel and meeting with him, he’s definitely the type of coach I’ve wanted to play for all along,” Landry said. “It’s a perfect it and I’m beyond excited to get down there and get to work. It’s a dream come true, a chance to play in the NFL.”
Landry was a player many draft forecasters had mocked to the Titans in the first round, but he stayed on the board through the first day of the draft and was there for the taking when the Titans made the move up.
Landry enjoyed his best season at Boston College as a junior in 2016 he had 16.5 sacks. He was bothered by an ankle injury as a senior and had just six sacks for the Eagles in 2017.
Landry fills one of the Titans’ biggest needs in the draft, an edge rusher to work behind starters Brian Orakpo and Derrick Morgan, both of whom are in the final year of their contracts. Kevin Dodd, drafted for that position two years ago in the second round, has battled injuries and a diappointment in his production.
The Titans still need depth at receiver and safety, and Robinson indicated that he believes there is late-round help available in those spots in the draft.