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Tennessee Titans: 4 cornerbacks who can solve their depth issues

Andrew Buller-Russ

While the 4-2 Tennessee Titans are coming off a big victory over the Buffalo Bills on Sunday night, they also lost cornerback Caleb Farley for the season after suffering a torn ACL.

This comes on the heels of another corner, Kristian Fulton going on injured reserve ahead of that matchup with the Bills. While Farley will miss the entire season, Fulton is dealing with a hamstring injury and it is not known how long the 2020 second-round pick will be out.

Even before the recent injuries to Farley and Fulton, the Titans could have used an influx of talent in their cornerback group. Especially if they hope to become strong contenders down the stretch. Here are four cornerbacks the Titans should trade for to boost their cornerback group.

Signing Brian Poole offers easy, affordable cornerback solution for Titans

NFL: New York Jets at Kansas City Chiefs
Nov 1, 2020; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) as New York Jets cornerback Brian Poole (34) defends during the second half at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Of the four players on this player acquisition list for the Titans, cornerback Brian Poole would be by far, the easiest to acquire. Released by the New Orleans Saints on Oct. 12 with an injury settlement, it is not known whether Poole is healthy, or when he might be.

Since he has been released, Poole is available for any team to sign. Though, he may not appeal to the Titans either if he’s expected to miss a significant amount of time. When healthy, Poole posted a solid 77.1 grade at Pro Football Focus in 2020.

Tennessee Titans trade for Joe Haden from Pittsburgh Steelers

NFL: Tennessee Titans at Pittsburgh Steelers
Aug 25, 2018; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry (22) runs after a catch as Pittsburgh Steelers defensive back Joe Haden (23) chases during the first quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

So, you don’t want to gamble on yet another free agent cornerback who may have injury concerns? That’s fine. There are several other cornerback options for Titans general manager Jon Robinson to look into.

Depending on how these next few weeks go, the 3-3 Pittsburgh Steelers could opt to become sellers to a minor extent. One example of that could be trading Joe Haden, who’s set to hit unrestricted free agency after the season. Trading Haden allows him to play for a team with playoff aspirations, getting a chance to thrive in a new scheme ahead of him hitting the open market while cutting costs for the Steelers.

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James Bradberry takes talent to Tennessee

NFL: Tennessee Titans at Carolina Panthers
Nov 3, 2019; Charlotte, NC, USA; Tennessee Titans wide receiver A.J. Brown (11) catches a pass against Carolina Panthers cornerback James Bradberry (24) during the fourth quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Brian Poole and Joe Haden probably aren’t all that exciting for a team hoping to go deep into the playoffs as the clear AFC South favorites. One player who may be available for the right price is New York Giants Pro Bowl cornerback James Bradberry.

The Giants signed Bradberry last season in free agency to a lucrative contract and he played very well his first season with the Big Blue but has regressed a bit in 2021. As the Giants continue to dwell at the bottom of the barrel, it’s possible Bradberry could be on the move.

While Bradberry is locked in through 2023, there has to be some reasoning for his regression this season, maybe it’s enough for the Giants to consider a trade?

Chasing the big fish; Titans reel in Xavien Howard

Syndication: Palm Beach Post
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Here we go. Miami Dolphins All-Pro cornerback Xavien Howard has been in trade rumors for a number of years now. Expected to be more competitive this season, the Dolphins have been bad, most recently losing to the previously winless Jacksonville Jaguars. Now, the Phish are 1-5 and are looking at another long season in South Beach.

Since he’s already reported to be unhappy with Dolphins’ management as he seeks a larger contract than his fellow cornerback Byron Jones, Howard should be seen as Tennessee’s top target right now. Howard likely wouldn’t be cheap to acquire and may want a bigger contract with a trade, but he’s an elite playmaker and likely worth the price of admission.