The Tennessee Titans are keeping the quarterback that led them within a victory of the Super Bowl, agreeing to a four-year, $118 million extension with Ryan Tannehill.
The Titans announced the deal Sunday, hours after the NFL Players Association approved a new collective bargaining agreement.
“Tennessee let’s run it back,” Tannehill wrote on Twitter.
After being traded by Miami to Tennessee last March, Tannehill went 9-4 overall as a starter, and 7-3 over the final 10 games of the regular season after the Titans benched Marcus Mariota in mid-October. Tannehill led the NFL with a career-best 117.5 passer rating, the fourth highest in NFL history and a franchise best.
Tannehill threw for 2,742 yards with 22 touchdowns and six interceptions during the regular season. His 9.6 yards per attempt also led the league as another team record. He set a team mark for completion percentage, completing 70.3 percent of his passes for third overall in the NFL. He also ran for 185 yards with four TDs on 43 carries.
Tannehill helped lead the Titans to their first AFC championship appearance in 17 years as the No. 6 seed with road wins at New England and Baltimore. They lost, 35-24, at Kansas City — one win short of the Super Bowl.
Tannehill earned his first Pro Bowl nod and was The Associated Press NFL Comeback Player of the Year.
This extension allows the Titans to either franchise tag NFL rushing leader Derrick Henry or sign him to an extension.
Henry led the league with 1,540 yards on 303 carries and became the first in the NFL to run for at least 180 yards in three straight games over the regular season or postseason. Henry had seven 100-yard games over his final nine games, and he ranks third in NFL history averaging 126 yards rushing for his career in the playoffs.
The Titans cleared up more salary cap space by waiving linebacker Cameron Wake and former Patriots running back Dion Lewis on Thursday, before waiving three-time Pro Bowl tight end Delanie Walker and kicker Ryan Succop on Friday. Spotrac.com projected the Titans with having more than $63 million in salary cap space after those moves.
Tennessee had been considered a team that would chase Patriots quarterback Tom Brady if the six-time Super Bowl champ hits free agency, Brady has a friendship with current Titans coach Mike Vrabel, a former New England teammate. But Brady turns 43 in August, and Tannehill turns 32 in late July.
Henry made clear which quarterback he wanted when asked about Brady and Tannehill on the “Bussin’ With The Boys” podcast last month.
“Speaking for everyone on the offense, we fed off of him ...,” Henry said of Tannehill. “Ryan Tannehill is our quarterback and went to the AFC championship. Why would we not want Ryan back?”
NFL won’t change league calendar
The NFL sent out a memo to all 32 teams on Sunday night confirming that the start of free agency and the new league year will not be pushed back. Free agency will still begin at 4 p.m. Wednesday.
Other aspects of the calendar that will not be affected by coronavirus: The franchise tag window officially closed at midnight Sunday, and restricted free agency remains the same. The last day of the RFA signing period is April 17, and the last day to match a qualifying offer from another team is April 22.
The NFL has canceled its owners meetings, which were set for later this month in Palm Beach, Fla., and banned all pre-draft travel, forcing teams instead to interview prospects via 1-hour video chat. But the NFL has not yet made any decisions in regards to the NFL Draft, which is scheduled for April 23-25 in Las Vegas.
Ravens acquire Calais Campbell from Jacksonville
The Baltimore Ravens are essentially getting a five-time Pro Bowl defensive lineman for a backup kicker who has spent time on five NFL rosters over the last eight months.
The Ravens agreed to trade a fifth-round draft pick in the upcoming draft to the Jacksonville Jaguars for veteran Calais Campbell, according to a person familiar with the deal. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Sunday because the trade can’t become official until the new league year begins.
It appears to be a downright steal for the Ravens considering they’re giving up the 170th overall pick, which they got by trading kicker Kaare Vedvik to Minnesota last August. The Vikings cut Vedvik three weeks later.
Now, they’re working to get Campbell a new contract that should make one of the league’s best defenses even better.
The 33-year-old Campbell was due to earn $15 million in the final year of his contract this season and count $17.5 million against Jacksonville’s salary cap. The Jaguars will take on $2.5 million in dead money by trading Campbell.
The Jaguars are unlikely to replace him with a fifth-round pick. It’s also another sign that Jacksonville is in rebuilding mode, trying to get its salary cap back in shape.
General manager Dave Caldwell already agreed to trade cornerback A.J. Bouye to Denver for a fourth-round draft pick. He also declined to pick up an option in defensive tackle Marcell Dareus’s contract.
Those moves will clear about $33 million in cap space, and trading Campbell pushes the total to $48 million in savings. The Jaguars also used their franchise tag on top pass-rusher Yannick Ngakoue last week, but the disgruntled defender has made it clear he doesn’t plan to sign the tender offer and wants to play elsewhere. He also could end up on the trade block.
Castonzo, Colts agree to extension
Veteran tackle Anthony Castonzo agreed to a two-year contract extension with the Indianapolis Colts. Castonzo, 31, has been the anchor of the offensive line since he arrived in 2011 as a first-round pick. And after Castonzo considered retirement earlier this offseason, Colts general manager Chris Ballard made it clear he wanted Castonzo back as part of one of the league’s top offensive lines over the last two seasons.
Castonzo has started all 132 games he has appeared in during his NFL career, plus eight postseason games. In 2019, Castonzo started all 16 games for the sixth time in his career.