Jadeveon Clowney free agency: Titans’ GM wants to see pass rusher in person before potentially signing him

Watch Now: Report: Browns Have Highest Offer For Jadeveon Clowney (4:32)

As we approach mid-July and with NFL training camps presumably only three weeks away for veterans, Jadeveon Clowney remains unsigned, but it’s possible that won’t be the case much longer. His current free agency status is in one part by design, one part due to teams waving off his exorbitant price tag, and one part due to challenges presented by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and the latter appears to be the driver behind the Tennessee Titans — a betting favorite the entire offseason to land Clowney — having opted to hold off on adding him to their roster. With players currently banned from teams’ facilities, and the three-time Pro Bowler coming off of core muscle surgery, general manager Jon Robinson would prefer to get a look at him (or any potential signee) before they put a contract offer on the table.

In a recent video interview with PaulKuharsky.com, Robinson notes he can appreciate Clowney’s conditioning videos posted online — something many free agents have taken to doing in 2020 — but social media videos don’t equate to the one-over done by a club’s medical staff.

“What I’ve seen on Twitter, him rushing off the edge and hitting that bag,” Robinson said. “Anytime you are dealing with whatever the contract is going to command, you want to make sure that the player is healthy, that you are able to allow your doctors to see him, to look at it, to make sure everything is going to be good.”

It’s a fair stance, but one not necessarily weighted evenly across the board when considering other teams who have interest in Clowney. It was once reported the Cleveland Browns were willing to pay the former first-overall pick more than any other suitor, but Clowney decided to pass on the offer. The Seattle Seahawks also remain interested in seeing him return, but while they admittedly have the inside track on Clowney’s health by way of him having suited up for them in 2019, the Las Vegas Raiders do not — yet coach Jon Gruden is reportedly very passionate about moving Clowney to Nevada for 2020

But, while the issue of not being able to inspect Clowney isn’t viewed equally across the board, it’s still very much a thing, and that’s likely one reason he hasn’t received an offer even remotely close to his initial ask of $20 million; or even the reported lessened one of $17-$18 million. Even the Raiders, who want him badly, aren’t offering the most coin to land him. Still, the Titans have interest — despite having not spoken to Clowney just yet — especially considering what the addition would mean to their defensive rotation.

“You’ve got [Harold) Landry, you’ve got [Vic] Beasley, you’ve got Clowney — hypothetically, to your point — you’ve got Jeffery Simmons, you’ve got DaQuan [Jones], who’s got some power rush,” Robinson pointed out. “You’ve got [Kamalei] Correa, who goes 100 miles an hour. You’ve got a lot of different pieces that you can move around. And you’ve got athleticism with Landry, with Beasley, with Correa — you can drop those guys into coverage and send David Long, Rashaan Evans, Jayon Brown or whoever it might be. 

“It just gives you a lot of chess pieces in that game.”

That said, they want to test drive the car before signing the finance paperwork. They might get their chance soon, assuming the NFLPA and NFL can agree on all fronts and players are allowed to get into facilities in July.

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