In the End, King Henry’s Loyalty Prevailed

In the End, King Henry’s Loyalty Prevailed

by July 17, 2020 0 comments

The Tennessee Titans and star running back Derrick Henry reached a deal on a new four-year, $50 million dollar contract on Wednesday that included $25.5 million guaranteed. The deal was struck just 30 minutes before the deadline for franchise players to agree to a new deal.

After placing the franchise tag on the team’s workhorse back and reigning NFL rushing title winner at the start of the offseason, both sides had until 4:00 p.m. on Wednesday to get a deal done. As late as Tuesday, multiple reports suggested that the two sides were nowhere near a deal, and it was unlikely one would be reached. Some even speculated that the team would ride this season out and franchise Henry again next offseason.

But after the deal was completed, Henry simply said, “I wanted to stay with the Tennessee Titans. They are the ones that took a chance on me. 31 teams passed on me in 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.”

In this day and age of football, athletes hold out for more money because everyone has their own opinion on their worth. With his new contract, Henry is putting the team first. He could have demanded that he become the highest-paid running back in the NFL, but he didn’t. He could’ve bashed the Titans’ organization for deciding to lock up quarterback Ryan Tannehill to a multi-year, big-money deal while hitting him with a less lucrative franchise tag, but he didn’t.

Henry knows that the team is holding on to salary cap space in hopes of bringing in free agent Jadeveon Clowney to secure the defensive side of the ball. Henry respects his team, his coaches, and the city of Nashville. Most of all, he respects the business side of the game. He knew that if he bargained for a contract north of $80 million, the team would have been unable to pursue or sign other players in the near future.

Agreeing to a $50 million dollar contract is nothing to scratch your head about because Henry could have potentially changed the whole dynamic for running backs going forward. Teams will benefit from the star’s new contract and may use his team-friendly deal as their negotiating point when they open talks with their own talented players.

All in all, Titans players, coaches, and fans woke up rejuvenated on Thursday morning knowing that Henry is in tow for at least four more years. The same can’t be said for the three other teams in the AFC South that will have to contend with the Heisman Trophy winner twice in each of those four seasons.

In this instance, the King’s loyalty prevailed over greed and demanding a King’s ransom.

Husband, father of 3 and an avid sports fan. Living out my childhood dream of writing about sports, now that I'm in my forties.

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