Titans release veteran running back Dion Lewis ahead of 2020 free agency, per report

The Tennessee Titans have released running back Dion Lewis, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN. This move was hardly a surprise on multiple fronts for Tennessee as CBS Sports’ Cody Benjamin reported back in late February that Lewis’ camp was “bracing” for this possibility. By moving on from him at this juncture, Tennessee saves an estimated $4 million off their cap in 2020 and roughly $4.8 million in 2021. 

Lewis first joined the Titans back in 2018 after signing a four-year, $19.8 million contract. In 2019, the back was phased out of the offense as teammate Derrick Henry captured the vast majority of the touches and carried Tennessee throughout the playoffs. Lewis totaled just 373 yards from scrimmage and one touchdown through 16 games. In the playoffs, he had just four touches for 22 yards. 

Throughout the regular season, Lewis played in just 36.97% of the total offensive snaps.

Given that lack of production, little playing time and relatively large cap number ($5.1 million), this is a logical move for Tennessee to part ways with Lewis, especially as the club is looking to re-sign both Henry and quarterback Ryan Tannehill. Even if the Titans elect to go in a different direction at quarterback (Tom Brady?), they’ll need every inch of available cap space to put together a team that can get back to the AFC championship and beyond. 

As for what’s next for Lewis, Benjamin reported back in February that Detroit Lions, Miami Dolphins and New York Giants are all expected to have interest in signing him. The common thread between those teams is that their head coaches were formerly with the New England Patriots, the organization where Lewis found the most success in his career. Matt Patricia, Brian Flores and Joe Judge were all on staff in New England back in 2017 when Lewis totaled 1,110 yards from scrimmage and nine touchdowns for the Patriots, by far his best season in the league. Because those clubs have seen what he can do firsthand, it’s no surprise they have interest. 

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