Tennessee Titans wide receiver A.J. Brown‘s name has been attached to talks about an extension and a potential trade this offseason.
Head coach Mike Vrabel isn’t having any of the latter.
“Not as long as I’m the head coach,” Vrabel said when asked on the Rich Eisen Show if Brown was on the trade block. “I love A.J. professionally, personally. I’ve gotten to know him well as his coach and enjoy seeing him as much as I possibly can. Saw him here working out here earlier, said hi. As long as I’m the coach here, I would want to have A.J. Brown on my football team.”
In an offseason already memorable for coaches saying they had no intention of trading star players prior to said star players being dealt, it’s not a stretch to wonder about how emphatic any head coach’s statements are.
Still, Vrabel’s known for speaking his mind and with Brown having emerged as one of the best young wide receivers in the game there’s no reason to believe he’d want to see him on the move following a season in which the Titans won the AFC South and earned the conference’s top seed.
Titans general manger Jon Robinson outlined a Brown extension as an offseason goal at the Annual League Meeting and subsequent reports underscore the club’s unwillingness to entertain any offers for the 2019 NFL Draft second-round pick.
Brown, coming off a 63-catch, 869-yard third season, is heading into the final season of his rookie deal, so an extension is paramount.
The 2020 Pro Bowler started his career with back-to-back 1,000-yard campaigns, but missed time due to a chest injury in 2021. That set the stage, however, to really showcase how dominant Brown can be for the Titans when he returned from three games missed to post 11 catches for 145 yards and a touchdown in a prime-time win over the San Francisco 49ers in Week 16.
In the Titans’ season-ending playoff loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, Brown still shined in defeat with five grabs for 142 yards and a score.
Judging by Robinson’s past comments and Vrabel’s most recent sentiments, that won’t be Brown’s final Tennessee showing.