Brown turned down other offers to return to the Titans, per Pelissero, who notes the four-year Titan contributor will stay for $5.25MM. A three-year starter with Tennessee, Brown represents a key retention move for a team that is making a considerable effort to improve defensively.
Although Brown’s 2020 season did not end well, with the former fifth-round pick suffering a major elbow injury, he expressed a desire to stay in Nashville. The Titans pounced, and Brown will reprise his role as a starter alongside Rashaan Evans at inside linebacker. Evans is under contract through the 2021 season but can be retained through 2022 by the Titans picking up his fifth-year option. It would cost them a fully guaranteed $9.74MM to do so.
As for Brown, he has played well since being elevated into the Titans’ starting lineup in 2018. Brown broke out that year, delivering a versatile performance — 97 tackles, six sacks, 10 QB hits — and followed that up with a 105-tackle slate in 2019. Tennessee’s defense struggled across the board last season, but Pro Football Focus has rated Brown as a top-20 linebacker in each of the past three seasons. The UCLA alum has also excelled in coverage, a facet that makes it a bit surprising this midlevel contract was the best he could do in free agency.
But Brown is, as of now, in position to have another crack at cashing in next year. And an elbow specialist just cleared Brown to return to full football activities, Pelissero tweets. Brown figures to be joined by UFA additions Bud Dupree and Denico Autry in Tennessee’s starting lineup next season.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.