Monday, March 31, 2014
Titans lost interest in Kenny Britt
By Paul Kuharsky
When the Titans drafted Kenny Britt 30th overall out of Rutgers in 2009, offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger was in love with the receiver’s physicality.
The ability to get off a jam at the line of scrimmage is difficult in the NFL, and if you can do that, Dinger said, a lot of things open up to an offense.
Now Britt will have a chance to do that for the guy Heimerdinger was coordinator for, Jeff Fisher. Britt struck a one-year deal with the St. Louis Rams.
At his peak, Britt did great work beating press coverage and beating people down field. He beat Arizona when he leaped and pulled in a last-play 10-yard touchdown in the 11th game of his career. He had a brilliant game his second season with seven catches for 225 yards and three touchdowns against Philadelphia.
He opened his third year with big back-to-back games for 136 yards and two touchdowns at Jacksonville and 135 more and a touchdown against Baltimore.
But a week later, he tore the ACL and MCL in his right knee against Denver. In 26 games over two seasons after his return in 2012, he went for 143 yards once and his second biggest receiving total was 67 yards.
Last year, after a solid camp where he looked poised to break out as he headed toward free agency, he wound up in the doghouse of Mike Munchak and Dowell Loggains over early drops and penalties.
Munchak and Loggains were fired after the season. Ken Whisenhunt hired John McNulty as his quarterbacks coach. McNulty coached Britt at Rutgers, but even with a likely ally on the Titans staff, Tennessee showed zero interesting in bringing Britt back.
He caused the team a lot of headaches with a bunch of off-the-field stuff. While he claimed to be an innocent victim, often targeted by police, he was simply around trouble too much.
He was unhappy with a coaching staff that was unhappy with him, and while he didn’t cause a stir, he didn’t set a great example either. Playing great or getting benched, he was typically laughing and seemed to be having fun.
While that’s probably preferable to moping, it didn’t cast him in a good light to much of the Titans fan base when it was paired with Sunday struggles.
I don’t know that Titans brass particularly cared about that part of his demeanor.
The Titans have spent two of their last four highest drat picks on receivers, with Kendall Wright in the first round in 2012 and Justin Hunter in the second round in 2013.
The arrival of those guys made it pretty clear Britt wasn’t a long-term Titan.