Derrick Henry, Titans Agree to New Contract; Reportedly for 4 Years, $50M

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist

AFC running back Derrick Henry of the Tennessee Titans walks off the field at halftime during the NFL Pro Bowl football game, Sunday, January 26, 2020, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/Gregory Payan)
Gregory Payan/Associated Press

Derrick Henry isn't going anywhere.

The Tennessee Titans officially agreed to a new contract with their star running back Wednesday.

Jay Glazer of Fox Sports reported it's a four-year contract.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Henry will receive $50 million with $25.5 million guaranteed on his new deal.

It was a surprise deal after Schefter reported Tuesday the sides were "not expected" to reach an agreement. The AFC South team got it done just before the 4 p.m. ET Wednesday deadline to agree to a multiyear pact with franchise-tagged players.

The team had announced the use of the non-exclusive franchise tag March 16, meaning other clubs had the right to negotiate with him, although the Titans could match any offer. If they didn't, whichever team signed Henry had to give Tennessee two first-round draft picks.

"I want to stay with the Tennessee Titans," he said, per the team's franchise-tag announcement. "They are the ones that took a chance on me—31 teams passed on me on the draft and they selected me. I have a lot of love for Tennessee. I have a lot of love for everyone in that organization."

The Titans selected Henry in the second round of the 2016 NFL draft out of the University of Alabama.

He displayed improvement on a year-to-year basis, with 490 rushing yards and five touchdowns as a rookie, 744 rushing yards and six total touchdowns in his second season, and 1,059 rushing yards and 12 total touchdowns in 2018.

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Henry was a key part of the offense but turned the corner into superstardom in 2019.

He made his first Pro Bowl and led the league in rushing attempts, rushing yards and rushing touchdowns with 303 carries for 1,540 yards and 16 touchdowns. He also led the Titans to the AFC Championship Game alongside quarterback Ryan Tannehill with a combined 377 rushing yards in playoff wins over the New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens.

There is some natural concern with a long-term deal given Henry's recent workload, but he is just 26 years old and proved he can put the team on his back even from the running back position in 2019.

He will look to replicate that effort for multiple years to come following this new deal.

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