ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
AP file photo by Rick Scuteri / Jadeveon Clowney, a defensive end/outside linebacker who played last season for the Seattle Seahawks, has agreed to terms with the Tennessee Titans on a one-year contract, the team announced Sunday.

Updated with more information at 11:10 p.m. on Sept. 6, 2020.

NASHVILLE — Jadeveon Clowney made clear for months he wanted to be with a team that can win a Super Bowl, and he has finally made his choice — even if he didn't get the long-term deal he also wanted in the process.

The Tennessee Titans announced Sunday they had agreed to terms with the three-time Pro Bowl defensive end/linebacker on a one-year contract. The Titans did not announce the terms, but ESPN reported the deal could be worth up to $15 million.

The Titans used their official Twitter account to share photos of Clowney next to a plane bearing the club's sword logo — one picture was of the player with team owner Amy Adams Strunk and said "We brought in the closer," while another was of him with family members and said they were headed to Nashville.

The No. 1 overall pick of the 2014 draft and a Southeastern Conference defensive player of the year at South Carolina, Clowney went into free agency looking for a mega contract that never was offered. The COVID-19 pandemic shut down travel for team physicals, and he didn't visit anyone once the NFL allowed free agents to meet teams in person.

That was despite having reported interest from the Baltimore Ravens, Cleveland Browns, New Orleans Saints and Philadelphia Eagles in addition to both the Titans and the Seattle Seahawks, the team he played for last season.

The Titans never hid their interest in the 6-foot-5, 255-pound edge rusher. On Thursday, several Tennessee players started lobbying on Twitter, including three-time Pro Bowl offensive lineman Taylor Lewan, who noted Clowney's big bowl highlight at Lewan's expense when he was at the University of Michigan. The left tackle wrote Thursday: "We can do this to other people's teams now."

"We have an offer out to JD, and we've talked to both him and his agent," Titans coach Mike Vrabel said Friday when talking to reporters.

Now Clowney joins a team that lost the AFC championship game in January to the Kansas City Chiefs, who went on to win the Super Bowl, and the coach whom the linebacker had his best season with when Vrabel was Houston's defensive coordinator in 2017.

He joins a defensive front featuring linemen DaQuan Jones and Jeffery Simmons plus outside linebackers Harold Landry III and Vic Beasley Jr., who had been considered the Titans' biggest offseason addition via free agency this year but only joined the active roster Saturday. The Titans already re-signed quarterback Ryan Tannehill and 2019 NFL rushing leader Derrick Henry to new contracts earlier this year.

Asked Friday how Clowney would fit in with the Titans, Vrabel said they ask and target players who love football, play with great effort and put the team first.

"I don't think it's too hard to function here and to be a great teammate," Vrabel said.

Clowney still must pass through the coronavirus testing protocol before he can join the Titans inside their building or on the field, but Tennessee has an extra day before playing the final game of the NFL's opening week at Denver on Monday, Sept. 14.

According to Sportradar, since 2016 only two NFL players — Aaron Donald and Chandler Jones — have more combined tackles for loss, forced fumbles and quarterback pressures than Clowney, who has 60 tackles for loss, eight forced fumbles and 159 total pressures. He also ranks fourth for most tackles for loss over the past four seasons, trailing only Donald, Cameron Jordan and Chandler Jones.

This deal comes just more than a year after Clowney's last big move. Seattle traded for him on Sept. 1, 2019, hoping to keep him around as more than just a one-year rental, sending two players and a third-round pick in the 2020 draft to Houston for Clowney. The Seahawks also agreed not to place the franchise tag on Clowney for a second straight year as part of the trade.

He had 31 tackles, three sacks, seven tackles for loss, a career-high four forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries in 13 games last season.

Clowney's acquisition was viewed as a success inside the Seattle locker room. He had a handful of games when he was the best defender on the field despite playing half the season with a core muscle injury that required surgery in January and kept him out of three of the final five games of the season.

A history of injuries has been the biggest knock on Clowney. He has played a full 16-game schedule only once in six NFL seasons — in 2017 with Vrabel as his coordinator. He had a career-best 9.5 sacks that year, the second of his three Pro Bowl campaigns, and he also had 21 quarterback hits and 21 tackles for loss.

Clowney has 32 sacks and seven fumble recoveries in his NFL career, and he also has scored four touchdowns off turnovers in 75 games played.

 

Wilson on reserve

The Titans have placed their top pick from this spring's NFL draft, offensive tackle Isaiah Wilson, back on the COVID-19 reserve list. The Titans made the roster move Sunday.

They also added running back Senorise Perry — who played at Georgia's Chattooga High School — and cornerback Chris Milton to the 53-man active roster while placing safety Dane Cruikshank on injured reserve. Cruikshank will be eligible to return after the Titans' Sept. 27 road game against the Minnesota Vikings under the revised rules for this season.

Wilson, the No. 29 overall pick out of Georgia, started training camp on the COVID-19 list before passing a physical and signing his contract Aug. 3, and he practiced through training camp. Being placed on the list means a player has either tested positive for COVID-19 or is quarantined after being in close contact with someone who has the virus.

The Titans also agreed to terms with 13 players for their practice squad, all of whom had been with the team in training camp, including Chattanooga native Kareem Orr, a cornerback who played at Notre Dame High School and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT