The NFL’s top workhorse runner in recent years comes off an injury-plagued 2021. That didn’t stop the Tennessee Titans from giving Derrick Henry a raise.
Once the team began giving him the football on a steady basis, there have been plenty of positives for not only the Tennessee Titans but their star running back as well.
Derrick Henry and the Titans made some news today.
This is not only a good deal for the six-year running back but the defending AFC South champions as well. The restructuring of the contract will save the Titans a tidy $5.2 million in cap space (via Spotrac).
Henry was a second-round draft choice in 2016 from the University of Alabama. During his first three seasons, he shared the backfield with either DeMarco Murray or Dion Lewis. That began to change in 2018 when he posted the first of three straight 1,000-plus yards seasons.
In 2019, he played and started in 15 games and led the league in carries (303), rushing yards (1,540) and touchdown runs (16). Henry got hot late in the year and it carried into the playoffs as the team reached the AFC title game. In 2020, he once again paced the NFL in rushing attempts (378), yards (2,027) and scores on the ground (17). And the Titans won the AFC South.
This past season, the relentless runner played in the team’s first eight games before getting hurt. There were 219 carries, 937 yards and 10 touchdowns. He came back to face the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC Divisional Playoffs but Mike Vrabel’s club was upset at home.
It’s been an interesting offseason for the running back position and especially in recent days where veterans such as Sony Michel (released by the Dolphins but now a member of the Chargers), Marlon Mack, Kenyan Drake (cut loose by the Raiders but now with the Ravens via ESPN’s Jamison Hensley), Phillip Lindsay and Duke Johnson were all released by various clubs.
Meanwhile, the Titans are rewarding their best player with a revamped contract – and for good reason.