rashaan evans

Rashaan Evans' fifth year option is being declined by the Tennessee Titans, making him eligible for free agency after the 2021 season.

As expected, the Tennessee Titans will not be exercising their fifth-year option on inside linebacker Rashaan Evans, according to a report.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter indicated that the Titans would decline Evans’ fifth-year option for the 2022 season, making him a free agent after the current season ends barring an extension.

Evans, the team’s first-round choice in 2018, has been a mainstay on the defense, starting seven games as a rookie and all 16 games in each of the past two years. Evans’ best season came in 2019 when he had 111 tackles, including nine tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks. Last season, as the Titans defense slumped as a whole, he finished with 96 tackles with one tackle for loss and a half sack.

Declining a fifth-year option is a familiar path for the Titans who declined options on 2016 first-round pick Jack Conklin, who signed with Cleveland last year, and on 2017 first-rounder Corey Davis, who signed this off-season with the New York Jets after putting up a career year in 2020 on the final year of his deal.

The Titans initially picked up Adoree’ Jackson’s fifth-year option last year, but wound up releasing him this off-season after he played in just three games. Jackson was signed by the New York Giants.

The Titans did get some insurance in case they do not extend Evans’ contract, as they drafted inside linebacker Monty Rice of Georgia in the third round on Friday.