The Newest Titan - 05/09/14

I met Taylor Lewan about an hour and a half ago for the first time.  For those of you who aren't familiar with Lewan by now, shame on you.  You obviously aren't a real Titans fan.  I'm kidding.  The left tackle certainly isn't a sexy 1st round pick.  He is however, a surprise.  If you read my previous blog, you see he was no where on my radar.  I didn't see anyone else who had him pegged for the Titans either.  Most draft gurus figured he'd be long gone by number-11.

Lewan came across to me as smart, personable and poised.  Confident in himself and his abilities.  Very media savvy.  He described himself as "having a nasty streak," "playing through the whistle" and not being afraid to "set the tone" or take a penalty to protect his quarterback in particular. 

He also was at times self-deprecating while at the same time being full of conviction.  There is no question in my mind he will be a leader of the offensive line someday, if not one of the leaders of the team.  It's easy to see why he was a captain at Michigan.  He not only had a great career on the field for the Maize and Blue, but in many ways was the face of the program.

Unfortunately, there are also several red flags.  And I'm not just talking about Lewan's penchant for personal fouls.  Off the field, he's had a pair of issues that are disconcerting.  As a freshman in 2009, he allegedly intimidated a woman who claimed she was sexually assaulted by one of Lewan's teammates.  He's currently facing one count of aggravated assault and two counts of assault and battery.  He has a court date set for May 19. 

Lewan is confident that he will be cleared of any wrongdoing in his latest brush with the law, just as he was in 2009.  Titans GM Ruston Webster is also confident that the 1st round pick's character is not, and will not be an issue moving forward.  We'll see. 

I've heard this before.  Remember Pac-Man Jones back in 2006?  How did that turn out? 

Listen, I'm not comparing Lewan to Jones in any way, shape, or form.  The left tackle handled himself very well when asked about these issues, not dodging any questions.  He remained poised and honestly, impressed me with his reaction and responses.  But it is something to keep an eye on.  Actually, let's hope it's not.

Let's hope we can talk about May 8, 2014 as the day the Titans drafted their next Hall-of-Famer, not their next convicted felon.  Taylor Lewan appears to have characteristics in him to be both.  Time will tell. 

 

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Last Update on November 28, 2014 10:07 GMT

CALIFORNIA-THANKSGIVING HEAT

SAN DIEGO (AP) -- Pity those poor folks in California, where they had to endure record heat while much of the nation shivered on Thanksgiving Day. Records were set in a number of California cities. It hit 85 at San Diego's Lindbergh Field, breaking a 111-year-old record. The National Weather Service says Los Angeles had a high of 86 -- one degree hotter than the 1977 record. Record highs were also hit in downtown Oakland, Santa Ana and in Riverside, where it reached 91.

COAT COLLECTION

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) -- It's "Buy Nothing Day" to some folks in Rhode Island. Instead of hitting the malls on this Black Friday, the Buy Nothing organizers are collecting winter coats for the needy. Event spokesman Greg Gerritt says they hope the Buy Nothing Winter Coat Exchange will get people thinking about the negative effects of consumerism. Coats are being collected at a number of locations in the Ocean State including churches and YMCA branches.

ZOO THANKSGIVING

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- How does a Thanksgiving feast of horse meat, crickets and lard sound? Well, it wasn't a holiday meal for people. The animals at the Kansas City Zoo got to enjoy plenty of fruit, veggies and raw meat, while we humans were stuffing ourselves with turkey and stuffing. The Kansas City Star reports elephants are partial to hay, the lions like raw horse meat.

VOLVO OCEAN RACE-TURKEY JERKY

SAN DIEGO (AP) -- "The turkey jerky was as good as it gets." So says skipper Charlie Enright, who's with a U.S. based sailing team plowing through the Indian Ocean. The crew got to celebrate Thanksgiving with some treats stashed aboard their boat. It was a surprise from the sailors' wives, girlfriends and shore crew. They had turkey jerky, pumpkin cookies and even cranberry sauce to spread on their normal freeze-dried fare. The sailors are competing in the round-the-world Volvo Ocean Race.

 
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