Rams Sign Kenny Britt
In what could end up being the bargain signing of 2014 free agency, the Rams have signed former Titans’ wide receiver Kenny Britt to a one-year deal. The deal, worth an estimated $1.4 million with the possibility of escalating up to $2.9 million with incentives, comes on the heels of a disappointing 2013 season that saw Britt collect just 11 catches in 13 games.
This move helps bolster a Rams receiving corps that saw its leading receiver – Tavon Austin – haul in just 40 passes on the year. Britt’s 6’3, 230-pound frame alone will help as Austin, Chris Givens, and Stedman Bailey all check in at under six feet tall.
Britt’s career has been plagued with on and off the field troubles that have held the Rutgers star back from ever truly living up to his potential. His best year came in 2010 where, in just 12 games, he amassed 42 catches for 775 yards and nine touchdowns, with a very respectable 18.5 yards per catch.
After the promising numbers in 2010, and veteran quarterback Matt Hasselbeck coming to town, Britt looked to be in line for a massive 2011 season. He was a big part of the Titans’ offensive plans in the offseason and it looked like he and Hasselbeck had built some chemistry together during training camp. Through the first two weeks of the season, Britt collected 14 catches for 271 yards and 3 touchdowns, which included an 80-yard touchdown versus the Jaguars – the second of his career from that distance. Unfortunately in week three versus Denver his season came to an end with tears to his right MCL and ACL.
Britt’s off-field incidents juxtapose his on-the-field turmoil. In April 2011 he was arrested after an alleged car chase with police. In June 2012 he was charged with resisting arrest, and in January 2013 – after his brother was stabbed at a party – Britt drove his brother to the hospital, but refused to give the police any information on the event. In all, Britt has had nine incidents with the police during his five-year NFL career.
Britt’s fantasy value has been that of a flier as he always seemed to be on the cusp of being a WR1, but just couldn’t ever get over the hump either because of injuries, off the field problems, or a bad attitude.
In his five seasons with the Titans he had three with over 40 catches, two of which ended with over 700 yards. His rookie year was the only year he played all 16 games, and in his disappointing 2013 season it was obvious he was just not a part of the Titans’ future.
Britt averaged six targets a game in 2010 and 2012, and amassed 25 targets in the two and a half games he played in 2011. It’s clear that Britt has the talent to get open, and when he does the volume is there, but it all comes down to his health and attitude.
Before 2013’s debacle, Britt collected 19 touchdowns in 45 career games. In 2010, Britt led fantasy receivers in both standard and point per reception leagues in the ever efficient points per opportunity stat, where he averaged a whopping 0.54 and 0.71 PPO, respectively. His average depth of throw that season was 18.4 yards, second in the league for qualified players behind Sidney Rice’s (Favre) 18.7. Britt also ranked in the top three in both PPO categories before his injury in 2011.
It’s obvious that Britt has the kind of ceiling that could make him a steal in fantasy leagues in 2014. He’s back with a coach that knew how to motivate him, and he’s going to a team that seems to be on the cusp of breaking out every year but just can’t catch a break.
If Britt keeps his head on straight, stays healthy and out of trouble, he could be a nice fit on your roster as a late round draft pick in 2014. He has a chance to prove that the early part of his career wasn’t a fluke, and being that he’s only 25 years old, he has plenty of time to resurrect his career.
Gary Althiser is a diehard 49ers and San Francisco Giants fan. He feels weird talking about himself in third-person, but if you want to find him, he usually spends his free time on Twitter irrationally arguing about Alex Smith, or sobbing after NFC championship games. @NFLGary