Vikings fans are currently licking their chops when they think about the idea of Minnesota going after Tennessee Titans CB Alterraun Verner in free agency. But fans aren’t the only ones excited about Verner entering free agency. Verner himself told The Tennessean all about the adventure ahead of him.
“I am more looking forward to it,” Verner said. “God has blessed me so much to put me in the position I am in, so I am grateful to know there might be someone out there — if not here in Tennessee — that wants me. So I am not sweating it at all.”
By saying “if not here in Tennesse”, you can assume that Verner is definitely open to the idea of playing for a different team this season. Sometimes, you get a player that will stay with a team on a “hometown discount” because of the familiarity to the scheme, players, coaches, and not having to move. However, that doesn’t seem to be the case for Verner.
“I guess you could say it exists, and it doesn’t exist. I love being here, I love my teammates and I love Tennessee. When it comes to the money, it is not like I need to be paid super high. But I am not going to be a fool and take anything that is super small. From a business standpoint, you don’t know how long you are going to play in this league, so you have to take advantage when you can. At the same time, it is not like I want the Titans to spend all of their salary cap just to keep me. It is not like I need ten or I need eleven, or I need to be one of the top five highest-paid corners in the league. I want them to be able to sign other guys to help the team. But I also want to feel respected, and the way Tennessee has operated and the way they have paid veteran players, they have set the tempo on how they value players. So if they don’t offer me something that shows they value me, I feel like it is a slap in my face.”
Verner knows that the Titans like him and don’t want to se him go, but he also understands the business side of the NFL and knows that it can be difficult to come to an understanding even when both sides are willing to get something done.
“I know deep down the organization likes me, but they’ve already done a lot of other things up to this point that makes it hard for them to get me. … And from a team standpoint, I feel like we are a couple of pieces away,” said Verner, who has 11 career interceptions. “So them not offering me is not them saying they don’t think I am a good player or they don’t want me, they just might need to focus on somebody else. … If I didn’t come back, I wouldn’t hold a grudge. I am open to anything. I am not saying I am fully anticipating going into free agency no matter what Tennessee does. I am not saying I really hope Tennessee comes through. I am just waiting to see what happens.”
And the Vikings should be watching and waiting to see what happens too. Verner should be a very hot commodity in free agency and could see some pretty lucrative numbers being thrown his way. At only 25 years old, he has a long future ahead of him and could a huge missing piece Minnesota’s defense.