The race for Tom Brady just got a little less crowded with reports on Sunday that the Tennessee Titans have agreed to terms on a new contract with quarterback Ryan Tannehill, dropping them out of the race for the future Hall of Famer.
The Titans have been pegged as one of the teams most interested in Brady, but in recent weeks reports have shifted as the team reportedly focused on keeping Tannehill for the long-term. Tannehill started this season as the backup to former No. 2 overall pick Marcus Mariota, but earned the starting job and led the team on a run to the divisional round of the NFL playoffs and a win over the New England Patriots.
NFL.com reported on Twitter on Sunday that the Titans had agreed to the terms of a contract extension with Tannehill.
“The #Titans have agreed to terms with QB Ryan Tannehill on a 4-year deal worth $118M, source says. He gets $91M in total guarantees and $62M in fully guaranteed money,” NFL insider Ian Rapoport reported on Twitter. “A huge payday after leading Tennessee to the playoffs.”
— NFL (@NFL) March 15, 2020
The signing leaves one fewer team in the running to sign Brady, who appears increasingly likely to leave the Patriots once the new league year and free agency starts this week. WEEI reported that this week the Patriots have given Brady a “take it or leave it” final pitch, a contract offer that would actually pay him less than the $23 million he made in the 2019 season. The report noted that the Patriots are strapped for cap space and would not be able to bring Brady back on the more than $30 million per year that he was reportedly seeking, increasing the likelihood that Brady would be leaving.
There have been a number of other teams still connected to Brady, including the Los Angeles Chargers and Las Vegas Raiders. As The Inquisitr noted, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers may also be planning to make an aggressive pitch to Brady that would include giving him wide latitude to weigh in on roster and gameplan decisions, a perk that Brady has enjoyed in New England. The Tampa Bay Times reported this week that the Bucs are “going all in” on Brady as they move on from the talented but inconsistent Jameis Winston.
It is not clear which way Brady could be leaning, as he has given few indications on what he plans to do in free agency or whether he would prefer to return to the Patriots.