In four seasons time, Adam Humphries went from undrafted rookie to sought-after free agent.
Humphries spurned the chance to play with a championship-winning quarterback for Tennessee.
He’s the GOAT, but ...
In an interview with Travis Haney of The Athletic, Humphries said he agreed to a four year, $36 million with Tennessee in part because of Tom Brady’s age.
“Obviously, he’s the G.O.A.T. That’s that simple,” Humphries said of Brady. “But there’s so much that factors into a decision. It was a four-year deal. Who knows how many [years] he’s got left? There’s a lot that goes into it.
“Obviously the chance to play with him would have been awesome, but a lot of things factor into that decision. Ultimately, I thought this was coming here to a team that was on the rise and with young talent on the offense and a really good defense. They’d had a taste of the playoffs. I felt like my need at the slot position was great. I felt like I could really contribute and start something new here.”
Brady will celebrate his 42nd birthday on Aug. 3, and has said numerous times that he’d like to play until he’s 45. For all the jokes about his avocado-filled, strawberry-free diet and devotion to pliability, it remains that the only starts he has ever missed to injury came in 2008, when a hit from then-Chiefs safety Bernard Pollard tore his left ACL.
The slot receiver, beginning with Troy Brown and through Wes Welker, Danny Amendola and Julian Edelman, has been a staple of the Patriots’ offense for years.
Reunited with a familiar face
Signing with the Titans, who were 9-7 last year but missed the playoffs, means Humphries is reunited with a member of the first NFL front office to take a chance on him. Tennessee general manager Jon Robinson was with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2014 when he was coming out of Clemson and brought him in for a tryout, which led to a contract for the undrafted rookie.
(One other fact from the story: tryout players so rarely make the roster that the Buccaneers included Humphries’ flight home in the offer to take part in their rookie minicamp.)
Humphries is coming off a career-best 76-catch, 817-yard season with Tampa Bay, playing in all 16 games with 10 starts.
His high school coach used to joke that Humphries would lead the league in receptions with Brady throwing to him.
Now he’ll catch passes from Marcus Mariota.
“There were a ton of pros and not a lot of cons,” Humphries said of making his decision. “You have to look at both situations and a quality of life and where you’re living, state taxes. A lot of things go into it when you’re talking with your agents and families and stuff about it. At the end of the day, my heart wanted to be in Tennessee. I was happy to finally have that all over with and have a team I could commit to and try my best for them.
“I felt like my talents would be used best here. And New England was the same way. That would have worked, too, but at the end of the day, it was a good decision to come here.”
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