Eagles' A.J. Brown Says He Would Have Stayed with Titans If They'd Offered More Money

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVApril 29, 2022

NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - JANUARY 22: A.J. Brown #11 of the Tennessee Titans celebrates after a big catch during a game against the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC Divisional Playoff game at Nissan Stadium on January 22, 2022 in Nashville, Tennessee. The Bengals defeated the Titans 19-16.  (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Wide receiver A.J. Brown said the Tennessee Titans weren't willing to offer him what he felt was a market-value contract, which led to his trade to the Philadelphia Eagles during the first round of the 2022 NFL draft Thursday night.

The Eagles acquired Brown for the Nos. 18 and 101 picks. The 2020 Pro Bowl selection told ESPN's Turron Davenport he didn't want to leave the Titans.

"This wasn't my fault," he said. "I wanted to stay, but the deal they offered was a low offer. The deal they offered wasn't even $20 million a year."

Brown explained the Titans' proposal checked in around $16 million per year with incentives that could have allowed him to approach $20 million annually. That fell short of his asking price in negotiations.

"I would have stayed if they offered me $22 million," Brown told Davenport.

Several star receivers have inked contracts this offseason, which significantly raised the bar for the type of deals a player of Brown's caliber could expect.

A $16 million average salary would have ranked 19th at the position and only represent a shade over half the $30 million Tyreek Hill received in his contract with the Miami Dolphins after his trade from the Kansas City Chiefs, per Spotrac.

Declining the Titans' proposal worked out for Brown, who proceeded to receive a four-year, $100 million extension from the Eagles, according to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network. It includes $57 million in guaranteed money.

Meanwhile, the Titans selected Arkansas wideout Treylon Burks with the No. 18 pick it received from Philadelphia in the trade. He'll likely receive a rookie deal in the neighborhood of $14.4 million over four years and carry a minuscule $2.6 million cap hit for 2022, per Spotrac.

So Tennessee, which features a run-first offense led by Derrick Henry, is taking the calculated risk that Burks can provide more bang for the buck over the next handful of years than Brown.

The Eagles had the financial flexibility to pay Brown, and now they'll feature one of the NFL's best one-two receiving tandems as he joins DeVonta Smith.

It creates a potential win-win situation for Philly and Tennessee, with both sides yielding some benefits from the trade.