The Buffalo Bills strengthened their front seven Monday, agreeing to terms on a one-year deal with Zach Brown.
The 26-year-old linebacker has spent the last four years with the Tennessee Titans. In 49 games for the team, he recorded 261 combined tackles, 10 sacks and six interceptions.
Brown was a key member of the Titans defense in 2012 and 2013, but that changed somewhat after he tore his pectoral in the opening week of the 2014 season. Avery Williamson and Wesley Woodyard supplanted him in the depth chart, and as a result, he made just five starts in 2015.
Brown sent a somewhat cryptic tweet in October that included Akeem Ayers, whom the Titans traded to the New England Patriots in 2014:
"It's hard for anybody," he said of the situation in December, per John Glennon of the Tennessean. "They made a decision, and it is what it is. I'm just taking advantage of when I'm in there. When my number is called, it's called. At the end of the day, I'm still going to go out there and do what I have to do. I'm not going to let that affect me."
While Brown's value in the free-agent market took a hit as a result of his limited role on the Titans, it could mean he is one of the bigger bargains among this year's class of linebackers.
Pro Football Focus graded him the 30th-best linebacker in 2015. While his 69.9 overall rating was less than impressive, he was ranked No. 12 in pass coverage and boasted a more respectable 74.8 rating in pass-rushing. Brown offers value in a few different areas, and his production will only grow if he can become a better run defender.
The way his time ended with the Titans might also motivate Brown to rebound in 2016. He'll likely carry a massive chip on his shoulder after losing his starting job, which is good news for the Bills.
Few would've considered Brown the best linebacker available, especially since Danny Trevathan, Brandon Marshall, Derrick Johnson and Jerrell Freeman were free agents as well. Still, he should be a nice addition to Buffalo's defense.