NFL free agency 2020: Ryan Tannehill lands new agent to prep for big money contract, adds pressure to Titans


The Tennessee Titans will likely need to locate the nearest Brinks truck, and then back it up to the front door of Ryan Tannehill in 2020. The veteran quarterback is entering the NFL offseason as an unrestricted free agent on the heels of a pivotal year in his career, wherein he was named starter over a struggling Marcus Mariota with the Titans standing on a paltry 2-4 record, in what became a turnkey decision by head coach Mike Vrabel that turned the entire season around in Nashville. 

The 31-year-old quarterback is now readying for what should be a monstrous payday, shedding his previous representation and joining Creative Artists Agency, a mega-conglomerate of talent known for negotiating some of the biggest contracts in sports. Things get much more intriguing from there, considering CAA also represents league-leading rusher Derrick Henry, who is also an unrestricted free agent set to break open the piggy bank in 2020. Considering the Titans would like to retain both, if at all possible, can go forward having more efficient conversations in trying to make that a reality.

But wait, there’s more.

Tannehill will be taken on by CAA’s Brian Ayrault and Todd France and, as noted by Titans insider Terry McCormick, Ayrault is also the agent for Jon Robinson — the Titans general manager. 

Essentially, this has all now become a “one call, that’s all” type of dialogue, if you will.

While it was Henry leading the charge in the playoffs, it was Tannehill who sparked the fire in the first place.

The latter won seven of his 10 starts in 2019 to help hoist the Titans to a 9-7 finish with a playoff berth, throwing for 2,742 yards with 22 touchdowns to only six interceptions in the process. He’d hand the keys to Henry once in the tournament — a gameplan that led to upsets over both the New England Patriots and the Baltimore Ravens — and although the Titans were ultimately eliminated from the playoffs in the AFC Championship Game, it was at the hands of the eventual Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs. 

For his efforts in the regular season turnaround, Tannehill landed his first-ever Pro Bowl nod along with honors as both Comeback Player of the Year and Most Improved Player. Adding to his 2019 resume, he also finished as the league’s highest-rated passer.

He now enters a market ripe with QBs ready to cash in, including Dak Prescott, Tom Brady, Philip Rivers, Jameis Winston, possibly Drew Brees and likely Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes. Instead of praying for rain and hoping Brady heads to Nashville, heaving money at an aging Rivers coming off of a 23 touchdown season with 20 interceptions, or hoping Winston is better than the 30 touchdown, 30 interception season he posted in 2019 — the Titans are all-in on trying to keep Tannehill around.

Now, with the proven and savvy CAA in the picture, they’ll need to write a bigger check.





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