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Thursday, April 22, 2010
Titans lucky to get Morgan at No. 16

By Paul Kuharsky
ESPN.com

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- They may have preferred another defensive end, but the Titans had to be happy to get Georgia Tech’s Derrick Morgan at No. 16 in the first round.

He’ll have ample opportunity to play early as the team sorts through a young group that lost Kyle Vanden Bosch as a free agent and let Jevon Kearse walk as his contract ran out.

Now Morgan will search for a role along with William Hayes, Jacob Ford, Dave Ball and Jason Babin, the journeyman signed as a free agent.

Morgan had 19.5 sacks and 29.5 tackles for a loss in his 39-game career as a Yellow Jacket. Twelve and a half of those sacks came last year as a junior.

Titans defensive line coach Jim Washburn is a top-flight position coach who’s done well developing pass rushers, and they want their defense to be able to rush effectively with only four. Right now they don't have the back end personnel that can allow for much blitzing.

Many estimated Morgan was the top ranked end in this class, but both Brandon Graham (Philly traded to 13 to get him) and Jason Pierre-Paul (Giants at 15) went before Morgan.

The Titans will say Morgan’s the one they prefer of the three. It may be true.

They will address cornerback later in the draft.