Four seasons after he led the NFL in sacks, Vic Beasley is parting ways with his employer in the middle of the season with the main reason proving simple: It just didn't work out.
Titans general manager Jon Robinson was asked about Beasley's fit with the Titans and in-season release, and he too was blunt.
"I just think that not every decision that we make works out," Robinson said, via The Tennessean's Erik Bacharach. "We spent a lot of time working with him, trying to get him going. At the end of the day, we thought it was best for us to go in a different direction."
Beasley's time with Tennessee started strangely, with the defensive end refusing to show up for preliminary COVID-19 testing at the start of training camp and staying away for an unexcused absence total of 10 days, enough to rack up $500,000 in fines. His absences didn't seem to fit the mold of a free agent who had signed for a little under $10 million on what could have amounted to a prove-it deal after he fizzled out of Atlanta. Instead, Beasley delayed his arrival and never amounted to much of a factor for the contending Titans.
Beasley wasn't a consistent presence on Tennessee's defense, never playing more than 35 snaps in a game -- that total was his highest, and came in his final outing last week -- and only recording a total of three tackles in 2020. It's part of a trend that has seen Beasley's production decrease in each season since his All-Pro campaign of 2016, per Pro Football Focus defensive grades, with a small boost in 2019 helping him earn the deal with Tennessee in the spring. That boost didn't last, with Beasley registering a 51.3 overall defensive grade, his second worst of his career.
Tennessee hedged against this disappointing outcome by signing Jadeveon Clowney just before the start of the season, which has worked out much better for the Titans than the Beasley addition. When asked whether he was disappointed over Beasley's addition not working out, coach Mike Vrabel said he was disappointed by losing.
At 5-2, that hasn't happened very often. The Titans are on to Chicago with Beasley in their rearview mirror.