When the Los Angeles Rams signed Kenny Britt to a one-year deal in 2014, he was coming off of a season in which he totaled 11 receptions for less than 100 yards with the Tennessee Titans. He had been pushed out of the system and his NFL career looked in doubt.
Britt resuscitated his career under former Rams (and former Titans) Head Coach Jeff Fisher inking a two-year deal in 2015 and topping the 1,000-yard mark in 2016 which no receiver had done for the Rams since 2007 in Torry Holt.
With a new coaching staff in town, the Rams decided to let Britt hit the market and his successful spell with the Rams has paid off in the form of a four-year deal with the Cleveland Browns:
Barring a breakdown in negotiations, #Browns are expected to sign veteran WR Kenny Britt later today, source told ESPN.— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) March 9, 2017
Once finalized with Browns, Britt's expected terms: 4 years, $32.5m, $17m gtd.— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) March 9, 2017
Ay papi, indeed.
It’s not a terribly dissimilar deal to the one the Rams are reportedly set to sign former Buffalo Bills WR Robert Woods to, though Woods who is about to turn 25-years old has an extra year on his reported deal compared to Britt who is three years his senior. The bigger difference is that Britt was forced into the WR1 role whereas Woods is likely a component of a WR corps that will require a WR1 to come through the draft, either in 2017 or 2018.
As an aside, there was some chatter about the new coaching staff not being enthralled with Britt’s off-field demeanor. Consider this:
Rams letting Britt go had more to do with his off-field commitment than any talent indictment. They were underwhelmed with his dedication.— Ian Wharton (@NFLFilmStudy) March 9, 2017
And then remember the report from Bleacher Report’s Jason Cole (I know, I know) that covered some discord between the Rams’ receivers and franchise QB Jared Goff. I don’t think it’s entirely unfair to read into those dots and connect them to the idea that Goff and Britt...weren’t “on the same page.”
Does it really matter at this point though? In retrospect, it was a bit of a win-win for Britt and the Rams. He was one of the rare free agent hits that actually worked out over his tenure, and for it, he landed a solid payday. Perhaps most importantly, they parted ways at a time when it was mutually beneficial.
What is this rare feeling of...satsifaction? Of institutional pride? The Rams did a good thing and it’s hard to criticize...why don’t we do this more often?!