As we continue through our post-draft blitz, we caught up with Jimmy Morris of Music City Miracles who graciously took the time to answer a few questions about their new acquisition James Gayle. Enjoy!
What position does Tennessee value James at? Defensive End or Outside Linebacker?
They have him listed as an outside linebacker. The Titans have been a 4-3 defense for a long time, but they are moving to 3-4 under Ray Horton this season. They will probably give him a look at both positions, but if he makes the team it will be as an outside linebacker.
Do you feel that you got a steal in Gayle as he fell out of a projected 5th round spot to undrafted due to an injured labrum he played the whole year with?
Yeah, he was obviously a guy they were high on after the draft process. It is funny how thin the line is between a 5th round pick and an undrafted free agent. It seems like every year there are quite a few guys that are projected to go 5th or 6th round and end up undrafted.
At his expected position, who will serve as his stiffest competition?
The Titans have a lot of bodies at outside linebacker, but none of them are spectacular. They expect big things out of Akeem Ayers, Shaun Phillip and Kamerion Wimbley, but they really won't know what they have until they get on the field in training camp.
Are there needs on Special Teams at present?
Absolutely, and that is the quickest way for an undrafted free agent to make the team. The good thing about the Titans for a guy like Gayle is that there is a new coaching staff so positions are wide open for the taking. If he can prove himself as a contributor on special teams in the preseason, he will have a good chance to make the team.
How did Tennessee do in terms of addressing their draft needs? Did falling short due to having just six picks put them in a position to rely heavily on this batch of Undrafted Free Agents?
They did OK. Eventually they are going to have to spend a high pick on a pass rusher, but they didn't think there was guy there at 11 that was a good value this year.
What is the way too early outlook for this season? What record do you expect out of the Titans?
The Titans are better than most people think. They are probably a year away from being a serious contender, but I think they have the talent to be in the mix late in the season. My prediction right now is 8-8 (that is subject to change).
Thanks to Jimmy for taking the time out to discuss Gayle and his prospects. We may be back with more as rosters whittle down and James battles for his job on the field instead of paper. Keep your eye out for more of these Q&As on the newest NFL Hokies!