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Titans fill more needs with UCLA LB Akeem Ayers

Published: Friday, April 29 2011 4:50 p.m. MDT

FILE - In this Feb. 26, 2011 file photo, UCLA linebacker Akeem Ayers makes a catch during a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis. Ayers is a top prospect in the upcoming NFL Draft.  (Michael Conroy, File, Associated Press) FILE - In this Feb. 26, 2011 file photo, UCLA linebacker Akeem Ayers makes a catch during a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis. Ayers is a top prospect in the upcoming NFL Draft. (Michael Conroy, File, Associated Press)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Titans have taken UCLA linebacker Akeem Ayers in the second round of the NFL draft.

Ayers was a Butkus Award finalist as a junior for the Bruins last season and immediately gives the Titans some size in their front seven. At 6-foot-4 and 255 pounds, he should help Tennessee improve its run defense. He also gives the team flexibility after spending time at defensive end on third down.

Tennessee entered the draft with needs at quarterback, defensive line and linebacker and stuck to the gameplan Friday with the 39th overall pick. Ayers finished his career with 183 tackles, including 29.5 for loss and 14 sacks.

The Titans opened the draft by taking former Washington Huskies quarterback Jake Locker with the No. 8 overall pick Thursday.

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