Five for 11: Darqueze Dennard for Titans


Continuing our week-long look at five potential possibilities for the Tennessee Titans at No. 11, in no particular order.

Monday was UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr.

Today we turn to...

Michigan State cornerback Darqueze Dennard

The good: He’s a physical player with great confidence and qualities that teams desire in their best cornerbacks. Reviewers say he's especially good on the outside using the sideline as help. He’s got good ball skills and is a solid tackler.

The bad: The Spartans’ physical front gave the secondary good protection, as quarterbacks didn’t have a lot of time to try to pick apart things downfield. He doesn’t have great speed.

Room for him: The Titans drafted Blidi Wreh-Wilson last year and Coty Sensabaugh the year before, positing themselves with good options to replace Alterraun Verner. If they draft Dennard, or the faster-but-less-physical Justin Gilbert, they’d have a deeper group with more options. But they are not corner-desperate, as many would have you believe.

How ESPN.com’s resident scout, Matt Williamson, sees him fitting with the Titans: “I think Ray Horton would prefer Darqueze Dennard to Justin Gilbert for one simple reason: He is much more physical. Gilbert isn't much of a tackler. Although I would say that Gilbert has better natural tools, Dennard is just the better all around football player right now."

Positives from our scouting report: Rates as exceptional in intangibles and instincts/recognition. Rates as above average in Production, height-weight-speed, cover skills, ball skills and run support. “Diagnoses things very quickly. Effectively reads quarterbacks' eyes and receivers' routes. Rarely out of position.”

Negatives from our scouting reports: Rates as below average in durability. Suffered a season-ending injury in 2010, missing five games. Missed three games with a concussion in 2011. Had a sports hernia and a shoulder injury in 2012.

Likelihood in my eyes he's available at No. 11: Good.