The NFL draft is the highlight of the offseason. It is where a team can set itself up for a Super Bowl run or a chance to pick in the top five next year.
The Titans have drafted a handful of gems and busts over the past few years.
Looking at the gems, it makes your team look smart because thirty-one other teams in the league passed on that player. Looking at the busts, it makes you sick to see who your team could have had instead.
Here are the gems and busts the Titans have had over the last couple of drafts.
These are the players that you don't see a highlight tape of on draft day. These are the players that get passed over because they are thought to be too small, too slow, or just didn't go to a big college.
Late round gems are usually some of the hardest working players in the league because they live with a chip on their shoulder. Every team in the league passed on these players multiple times, and now these gems make opposing teams regret their ignorance.
Here are the "sleepers" the Titans have drafted over the past few years.
The Titans drafted inside linebacker Stephen Tulloch with the 116th overall pick in the fourth round of the 2006 NFL draft.
Tulloch has received playing time since his rookie year and has never missed a game as a Titan. He earned the Titans starting middle linebacker spot in 2008.
Linebackers drafted ahead of Tulloch:
The Titans drafted tight end Bo Scaife with the 179th overall pick in the sixth round of the 2005 NFL draft.
Scaife has been a solid contributor to the Titans offense since his rookie year. In 2008, he led the team in receptions.
Tight ends drafted ahead of Scaife:
The Titans drafted David Stewart with the 113th overall pick in the fourth round of the 2005 NFL draft.
Stewart has started every game for the Titans at right tackle since 2006. He earned a spot on the 2008 All-Pro second team.
Tackles drafted ahead of Stewart:
The Titans drafted Cortland Finnegan with the 215th overall pick in the seventh round of the 2006 NFL draft.
He Finnegan has started on the Titans since 2007. His breakout year was in 2008 when he picked off five passes on the way to his first Pro Bowl appearance.
Cornerbacks drafted before Finnegan:
A bust is a highly valued player going into the draft that just doesn't pan out in the NFL. Some players are overvalued because of unique athleticism or inflated college production.
A player drafted in the high rounds is supposed to be a big part of that squad for years to come. If that player turns out to be a bust, that franchise will take a few steps back.
Here are the draft picks the Titans have whiffed on in the past few years.
The Titans drafted Calico with the 28th pick of the second round of the 2003 NFL draft.
Tyrone Calico had very good athletic ability and drew comparisons to Terrell Owens. Calico was plagued with injuries throughout his three year career. The Titans cut him in 2005 after he sustained a knee injury.
Wide Receivers drafted after Calico:
The Titans drafted Chris Henry with the 18th pick of the second round of the 2007 NFL draft.
Henry has the speed and strength of Adrian Peterson. He just doesn't have the skill set to be a solid NFL running back. Chris Henry was cut by the Titans in 2009.
Running backs drafted after Henry:
The Titans drafted Ben Troupe with the 40th overall pick in the second round of the 2004 NFL draft.
Troupe definitely had the size and athletic ability to be a great tight end in the NFL. He is six foot four inches tall and 260 pounds. If you search Ben Troupe on Google images, you will find a half-a-dozen pictures of him hurdling people.
Troupe could never put it all together and was not re-signed after the 2007 season.
Tight ends drafted after Troupe:
The Titans drafted Andre Woolfolk with the 28th pick in the first round of the 2003 NFL draft.
Andre was highly sought after going into the 2003 draft. He never really developed into a solid starting cornerback. Of course, all of his injuries didn't help out his cause either.
Cornerbacks drafted after Woolfolk:
The Titans drafted Adam Jones with the sixth pick in the first round of the 2005 NFL draft.
In just his second season, Jones showed signs of becoming a legit shutdown cornerback in the NFL. He already was one of the game's most dynamic punt returners.
In 2007, he was suspended for the entire season after his double-digit arrests. The Titans traded him to the Cowboys in 2008. After a year with Dallas, he was cut.
Pacman had all the talent in the world, but he liked to make it rain more than he liked to make plays on the football field.
Cornerbacks drafted after Jones: