‘Bold’ Bills Trade Proposal Sends $50M Running Back to Buffalo

Derrick Henry

Getty Derrick Henry looks to lead Tennessee to new heights in 2022.

The Buffalo Bills have said they want quarterback Josh Allen to cut back on the number of hits he takes in the coming season, and one NFL analyst believes they can relieve the pressure by adding one of the league’s top running backs.

ESPN reporter Jeff Darlington said on “Get Up” that the Bills could consider trading for Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry, who is in the final year of his $40 million contract. Darlington speculated that the Titans could be looking to shed his contract and may find a willing trade partner in Buffalo.

‘Bold’ Move Gives Bills a Top Running Back

Darlington stressed that the trade — which SI.com’s Bills Central called “bold” — was just speculation at this point, but said the Titans may be willing to make a big move given Henry’s contract situation.

“You want to trade a guy before it’s too late,” he said. “Maybe they get something. Trade away Derrick Henry to the Buffalo Bills. Just speculating here, but man, that’d be a fun one.”

Henry has been one of the league’s top running backs, rushing for 1,538 yards with 13 touchdowns last season. He could give the Bills a reliable target out of the backfield as well, as he is coming off a season where he made a career-high 33 receptions for 398 yards.

The Bills have struggled to get consistent production out of their backfield, and their most reliable running back, Devin Singletary, is headed to free agency. If Singletary should leave Buffalo, largely unproven second-year back James Cook would likely move into the No. 1 spot.

The Titans are coming off a 7-10 season, losing their final seven games and blowing what had been a four-game lead in the AFC South. There are mixed signs about their future, with new Titans general manager Ran Carthon saying he wants to “reload” next season, not rebuild.

“This is a competitive team and we can win football games,” Carthon said, via SI.com’s All Titans. “But at the end of the year, you evaluate your roster and you’re always looking for ways to improve that. That’s what we’re going to do here.

“Although I feel like the team is competitive and we’re good, the objective is not to be good. The objective is to be great. So we’re going to continue to work to build a great roster. That’s going to be every year. So you can always take it to a new height. So that’s going to be our approach.”

Bills Want to Take Pressure Off Josh Allen

While it’s not clear if the Bills would have any interest in trading for Henry, or the cap space to do it, the team has made it clear that protecting Allen is a priority. In season-ending remarks to reporters, Bills general manager Brandon Beane said he wants to see the quarterback taking fewer hits next season.

“The only thing I’d get on to him is he’s got too many bruises on him,” Beane said, via the Democrat & Chronicle. “And we’ve got to work on taking less hits. That’s the only reason I’m going to ever criticize Josh is just take less hits.”

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