Titans will use SLB Ayers in a variety of ways

Posted May 06, 2011 @ 11:39 a.m.
Posted By Arthur Arkush

One of the Titans' biggest goals heading into the draft was adding size to the linebacking corps. Standing 6-foot-2½ and tipping the scales at 254 pounds, second-round SLB Akeem Ayers fills the bill.

"He's a big kid, one of the real big linebackers who has come out in a long time," Titans college scout Marvin Sunderland said last week. "He's got athletic ability, speed. He's a good pass rusher, probably fits what we're doing here better than a lot of guys."

The Titans have big plans for Ayers, who tallied four sacks, four passes defensed and two forced fumbles his junior season at UCLA. Word is the defense, under the direction of new coordinator Jerry Gray, wants to find more ways to employ the playmaking Ayers than it did with other 'backers under former defensive coordinators Chuck Cecil and Jim Schwartz. Ayers will play close to the line of scrimmage and help set the edge, but he also possesses the versatility to put his hand on the ground on third down, as well as drop back in coverage.