Adam Humphries: Tom Brady's Age Factored into Signing with Titans over Patriots

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistJune 3, 2019

Tennessee Titans wide receiver Adam Humphries runs a drill during an organized team activity at the Titans' NFL football training facility Tuesday, May 21, 2019, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
Mark Humphrey/Associated Press

Slot receiver Adam Humphries signed with the Tennessee Titans this offseason but not before the New England Patriots came calling. 

But Humphries chose the Titans in part because he had uncertainty about how much longer Patriots quarterback Tom Brady would play, as he told Travis Haney of The Athletic:

"Obviously, he's the GOAT. That's that simple. But there's so much that factors into a decision. It was a four-year deal. Who knows how many (years) he's got left? There’s a lot that goes into it.

"Obviously the chance to play with him would have been awesome, but a lot of things factor into that decision. Ultimately, I thought this was coming here to a team that was on the rise and with young talent on the offense and a really good defense. They'd had a taste of the playoffs. I felt like my need at the slot position was great. I felt like I could really contribute and start something new here."

Humphries, 25, signed a four-year, $36 million contract with the Titans this offseason after having an excellent 2018 campaign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, registering career highs in catches (76), targets (105), yards (816) and touchdowns (five). 

That made him a hot commodity in free agency, and his decision ultimately came down to the Titans and Patriots. 

"There were a ton of pros and not a lot of cons. You have to look at both situations and a quality of life and where you're living, state taxes. A lot of things go into it when you're talking with your agents and families and stuff about it. At the end of the day, my heart wanted to be in Tennessee. I was happy to finally have that all over with and have a team I could commit to and try my best for them.

"I felt like my talents would be used best here. And New England was the same way. That would have worked, too, but at the end of the day, it was a good decision to come here."

The Patriots and Brady have relied heavily on slot options like Humphries in the past, most famously Wes Welker and Julian Edelman. And with Danny Amendola now in Detroit, the Patriots had an opening for him. 

But Humphries instead hitched his wagon to Marcus Mariota and the Titans instead, where he'll pair with Corey Davis, Tajae Sharpe, AJ Brown and Taywan Taylor at wide receiver. Tennessee was a poor passing team in 2018, finishing 29th in passing yards (2,975) and tied for 28th in passing touchdowns (16). 

The addition of Humphries, the progression of Davis and the hopeful health of Mariota should improve those numbers. But if the Titans falter in the passing game once again in 2019, Humphries may regret spurning Brady, no matter how many years he has left.