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Titans Sign Tony Pollard to Three-Year Deal as Derrick Henry Era Officially Ends

In a surprising turn of events, the Tennessee Titans have secured a three-year deal with former Dallas Cowboys running back, Tony Pollard, effectively closing the door on any potential return for star running back Derrick Henry. The deal, reported by KPRC-TV and valued at $24 million according to ESPN, marks a significant shift in the Titans’ backfield dynamics.

Derrick Henry, who had been a powerhouse for the Titans, accumulated an impressive 9,502 rushing yards and 90 touchdowns in 119 games over his tenure with the team. However, the Titans and Henry decided to part ways, leading to speculation about who would fill the void left by the four-time Pro Bowler. Henry, known for his exceptional performance, even achieved Offensive Player of the Year honors in 2020 with a remarkable 2,000+ rushing yards.

The Titans’ gamble on Pollard, who emerged as the starting running back for the Cowboys in 2022, comes after a season where he ran for 1,005 yards and six touchdowns in 17 games. The 26-year-old became the primary back in Dallas after Ezekiel Elliott’s departure to the New England Patriots.

While Pollard’s 2023 season was not as efficient as his standout 2022 performance, with a dip in yards per carry and struggles in the red zone, his overall comeback from a fractured left fibula showcased his resilience. With a focus on the upcoming season rather than rehabbing an old injury, there is hope that Pollard can recapture his 2022 form.

The Titans’ general manager, Ran Carthon, had previously left the door open for Derrick Henry’s return, but with Pollard’s signing, it appears that Tennessee has firmly moved on from the era of Henry. Henry, a fan-favorite and franchise-record holder, will now enter unrestricted free agency, with his future in the NFL uncertain.

Interestingly, the Baltimore Ravens, in need of a running back, are reportedly eyeing Derrick Henry in the ongoing free agency frenzy. Despite Henry being 30 years old, his powerful running style and proven track record make him an attractive option for teams seeking a dynamic offensive presence. The Ravens, led by quarterback Lamar Jackson, could benefit from Henry’s capabilities, adding a new dimension to their backfield.

As the 2024 NFL free agency unfolds, the landscape is filled with notable running backs, including Saquon Barkley, Josh Jacobs, D’Andre Swift, and now Tony Pollard. The drama continues with unexpected moves, blockbuster trades, and significant signings, keeping football enthusiasts eagerly awaiting the start of the new league year.

In summary, the Titans’ acquisition of Tony Pollard signals the end of an era with Derrick Henry, while Henry’s future remains uncertain in the midst of intriguing developments across the NFL landscape. The dynamic shifts in the running back market set the stage for an exciting and unpredictable 2024 season.