Jon Robinson pointed out that he has hit more than he has missed when it comes to the NFL Draft.
The Tennessee Titans’ general manager has drafted several stars and starters in his first five years in charge of personnel. His high points include running back Derrick Henry, safety Kevin Byard, wide receiver A.J. Brown and others.
It is also fair to say he has missed a few times.
In particular, the Titans’ 2020 draft class mostly underwhelmed in its first season. First-round pick Isaiah Wilson, an offensive tackle from Georgia, played minimally and is no longer with the team due to numerous off-field issues, while others missed extensive time with injuries.
Robinson, on Monday, said he always puts pressure on himself to get draft picks right. He did not say if he feels any pressure ahead of this year’s draft to get it right considering last year’s struggles but did admit that the Titans certainly can’t afford to miss the mark again this season.
“I think we’ve gotten it right probably more than we have wrong,” Robinson said. “Last year was certainly not a great situation for us. There has been maybe one other [draft pick] that didn’t work out so well. I am proud of the guys in the process that have come in here that have done things the right way and been productive members of our football team.
“...The ones that I or we didn’t get right, I am certainly not looking to do that again.”
A rundown of Robinson’s biggest draft misses as he enters his sixth NFL Draft as general manager:
• Isaiah Wilson, right tackle, 2020 first-round pick: Wilson played all of four snaps with the Titans. From nearly being arrested at a Tennessee State University party during training camp, to his involvement in high-speed chases in which police found drugs in his vehicle in January, Wilson’s self-destructive and deplorable behavior away from the field has seemingly pushed him out of the league. The Titans pride themselves on draft players who have an undying love and passion for football, and Wilson, clearly, did not fit that bill.
• Kevin Dodd, outside linebacker, 2016 second-round pick: Ahead of the 2016 NFL Draft, many believed Dodd to be a first-round pick after a standout career at Clemson. He turned out to be anything but that to the point that there were questions about how committed he was to football. Dodd recorded one sack and 12 tackles in 18 games. He failed to report to training camp in 2018, which resulted in the Titans releasing him. He has since faded from the NFL.
• Taywan Taylor, wide receiver, 2017 third-round pick: An exciting prospect out of Western Kentucky, Taylor had his moments with the Titans, including a three-catch, 104-yard showing against the New York Jets in 2018. But he never could put it all together. After the 2018 season, the Titans traded Taylor to the Cleveland Browns. He played in six games over the 2019 and 2020 seasons, and he did not catch one pass. He is currently a free agent.
• Josh Carraway (linebacker), Brad Seaton (offensive tackle), Khalfani Muhammad (running back), 2017 seventh-round picks: A linebacker from TCU, Carraway (227th overall) played in one game for the Titans and spent the majority of his time with the team on the practice squad. Tennessee released him ahead of the 2018 season.
Seaton (236th overall), an offensive tackle from Villanova, never played in a game with the Titans, and he has yet to do that with another team. Likewise, Muhammad (241st overall), who played collegiately at California, did not appear in a game for the Titans and has not with other teams.
No team is going to hit on every seventh-round selection, but the Titans got effectively nothing from three guys in a span of 14 picks.
“We haven’t been perfect,” Robinson said. “We’ve certainly had some misses along the way, but guys that come in and buy into our philosophy and what we’re trying to do here and contribute on the field to winning – we’ve won more than we’ve lost. We certainly would like to win some more.
“… I’m proud of the work that’s been put in by our scouts and the way that we go about evaluating prospects and how they fit our football team. Again, we haven’t been perfect, but I feel like we’re certainly on the right track.”