Interview with Dave Razzano by Dewey Hammond.
Dave Razzano is a former NFL scout and Playmaker Mobile correspondent with more than 22 years of professional scouting experience with the San Francisco 49ers, St. Louis Rams and Arizona Cardinals under NFL coaches including Bill Walsh, George Seifert, Chuck Knox and Dick Vermeil. He's been a part of five Super Bowls with three Super Bowl wins (49ers, 1989, 1990; Rams, 2000).
Q: What do you see with Vince Young and the Titans this season?
A: Vince Young took over at 0-6 and they ended up 8-8 so he was 8-2 as a starter, which is unbelievable. He’s a winner. He doesn’t put up the numbers but a lot of that is the talent around him. They have guys at receiver like Gage, Nate Washington, Kenny Britt is young. They don’t have elite offensive skill. They do have Chris Johnson obviously at running back and they have a nice offensive line, but they haven’t helped him in terms of getting the outside guys. I like Vince Young a lot and I think he’s working hard this offseason. He’s a playmaker and I think they can win with him. But they’ve also fallen off defensively and that hurts Vince Young. If they had the elite defense they had three or four years ago, boy, it’d be a whole different story.
Q: One guy you mentioned, Kenny Britt, immortalized for at least one season in that NFL ad where Troy Polamalu goes head and shoulders above him to grab that one-handed interception. A bit embarrassing for Britt, but he put up pretty good numbers last year, or at least had a few pretty good games when it came to the numbers. What do you see with Britt, and also wideout Lavelle Hawkins, who has been a disappointment since coming out of Cal.
A: Lavelle Hawkins, immature coming out of college. Kenny Britt, a bit immature coming out of Rutgers. A big-play guy who can go get the football but what they need to pick up is the maturity and work ethic. Damian Williams, the rookie out of USC, another guy I don’t like. They have some guys with questionable maturity and work ethic in that group. Justin Gage is a solid guy. Nate Washington should be. A guy I really love is Mark Mariani coming out of Montana. I think they took him in the sixth round. He had like 29 touchdowns, great punt return guy and a solid underneath slot receiver. He was a big-play guy up there for three years. These other young guys need to pick it up, but the problem is they often don’t change. That’s the problem with Lavelle Hawkins. I wasn’t crazy about him coming out of Cal. The maturity issues, always complaining. So Kenny Britt has the talent but he needs to harness that talent. I think he can do it. Supposedly he’s had a good offseason and it all comes down to your offseason work ethic. The starters, Gage and Washington, they can be solid, but many of the rest have suspect maturity levels.
Q: You mentioned Mariani out of Montana, they got another tight end out of Montana, they got a couple guys from Brown. What do you say to Titans fans who wonder why they’re team is drafting multiple guys from Brown and Montana?
A: Mariani was one of my favorite players. I don’t know that other kid from Brown but they had some great picks. Derrick Morgan, rookie out of Georgia Tech, was an outstanding pick. Rennie Curran is undersized but he fits the mold of the Colts. He’s explosive and active as can be. Alterraun Verner, he had like 56 pass breakups in college, four returned for TDs. He’s another guy who I think can help them this season. They did get some guys from smaller schools but they must have been highest on the board at the time. Some are better than others but you can find players anywhere.