The Chargers and Hunter Henry won’t have an extension in place by the afternoon deadline, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter) hears. There was strong mutual interest in a long term arrangement, but the current economic client scuttled any potential deal.
Henry has already signed his one-year, $11MM tender, so he’s locked in for the upcoming season. Back in April, Henry said he was “close” to inking an extension at some point, but a deal never came together. Now, he’s playing on a prove-it deal, and he mostly needs to prove that he can stay healthy.
The former second-rounder missed all of 2018 with a ACL tear and also missed time last year with a knee injury. At the same time, 2019 was a career year for Henry – he tallied 55 catches for 652 yards and five touchdowns in just 12 games.
It’s not an ideal outcome for Henry, but he does have the honor of being the first tight end to receive the franchise tag since 2014, when the Saints used it to cuff Jimmy Graham. For now, Henry says he’s focused on the present.
“To me, I have so much to prove,” Henry said recently. “Honestly, everybody knows my history of injuries. Unfortunate injuries that have happened in my career and I feel like that has held me back a little bit sometimes. I’m just eager to kinda get through something that I haven’t been able to do for a full season…I feel the best I’ve felt in probably a couple years, for sure. I’m excited.”
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.