What are the Titans getting in RB Tony Pollard?

Everyone expected the Tennessee Titans to prioritize offensive linemen and wide receivers once free agency's legal tampering period opened on Monday afternoon. The order of signings doesn't matter, but that's why it qualified as borderline shocking that Tennessee's first announced deal of the day was with running back Tony Pollard. Of course, a deal with free-agent center Lloyd Cushenberry was reported less than one hour later, and cornerback Chidobe Awuzie and linebacker Kenneth Murray arrived in the evening.

https://twitter.com/NFL/status/1767231245149155431

Pollard's signing occurred approximately 30 minutes into the negotiating period. That signals intent and conviction, and chalks up everything new head coach Brian Callahan and Ran Carthon said about possibly retaining Derrick Henry as media fodder and coach speak. Pollard was a clear target.

What exactly are the Titans getting in Pollard? Once the change-of-pace back to Ezekiel Elliott in Dallas, the Cowboys finally did in 2023 what many of their loyal fans had been clamoring for. They released Elliott from his bloated contract and made Pollard their bellcow back. That decision was made despite Pollard suffering a serious ankle-and-leg injury in a divisional-round defeat to the San Francisco 49ers.

The Cowboys applied the franchise tag to Pollard. Knowing his injury prevented him from possessing any leverage in negotiations, Pollard quietly signed the tag, refusing to make the stink his counterparts (Saquon Barkley, Josh Jacobs) were making. Perhaps . . .

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Author: Justin MeloSenior Writer, Interviewer and Podcaster for Broadway Sports covering the Tennessee Titans and NFL draft. For more than five years, Justin Melo has professionally covered all things NFL draft and Titans for The Draft Network, SB Nation and USA Today. Best known for his Interview Series with NFL draft prospects, Justin has interviewed more than 500 NFL players. Co-host of the Music City Audible podcast alongside Justin Graver (@titansfilmroom).