Ryan appeared on Devin and Jason McCourty’s “Double Coverage” podcast recently and explained what happened (or didn’t happen) between he and the Titans.
“It’s just a business,” Ryan said. “This time it’s a little different. Tennessee really never offered me a contract. They never really talked extension or free agency. They never really tried to bring me back. It was kind of the whole ‘you know, we’ll monitor the market, you’re probably gonna get too much and we probably can’t afford because we got a lot of players on this team.'”
The Titans had more pressing matters elsewhere on the roster, namely finding a way to keep both quarterback Ryan Tannehill and NFL rushing champion Derrick Henry. Offseason retention efforts required some personnel maneuvering — letting right tackle Jack Conklin walk and trading away Jurrell Casey, for example — and it didn’t include striking a new deal with Ryan.
The veteran corner said he approached the Titans with a proposal: Sign him to a one-year deal at the same annual salary ($10 million) he was making on average during his most recent contract. Ryan felt he’d performed well in a contract year and should at least get what he was already making and a chance to earn an extension or another run at free agency a year from now.
Tennessee wasn’t interested, according to Ryan, who then realized he didn’t have a future with the Titans, leading to his Instagram post last week in which he said goodbye.
Ryan could end up attracting a similar offer elsewhere, though it’s interesting that there hasn’t been much public traction on such a deal. The 29-year-old seems to still have at least a couple more years of quality play left in him, and at this point, it wouldn’t be much of a risk for a team with ample cap space to sign him to a deal similar to the one he described.
It’s often about fit, though, and time might mold a fit out of one that didn’t exist earlier in the offseason. We’re still awaiting Ryan’s right fit in a place outside of Nashville.