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DeAndre Hopkins Happy to Be With the Titans, and He Feels Like He's at Home in Tennessee 


NASHVILLE – DeAndre Hopkins now officially a Titan, and he's fired up about it.

"I am very happy, very glad," Hopkins said on Monday after signing his deal with the team. "This was a team that as soon as the offseason hit and I knew I was possibly going to be traded, this was a team that was on my list of places that I wanted to play because of the history Mike Vrabel and I have, the history Tim Kelly and I have.

"I wanted to be somewhere where I knew people had my best interests, not just on the field but off the field as well."

A 10-year NFL veteran, Hopkins has totaled 853 receptions for 11,298 yards and 71 touchdowns in his time with Houston (2013-19) and Arizona (2020-22).

On Monday, the five-time Pro Bowl selections talked about everything he likes about the Titans and Nashville, and what he's hoping to bring to the team.

Hopkins spent time with Vrabel and Kelly, the team's new offensive coordinator, in Houston.

"Vrabel is a straight shooter, and over my career he has always checked in on me," Hopkins said. "Even when I was in Houston, he was a defensive coach, but he would still check on me just to see how I was doing – that always stuck with me, and I always wanted to be around people like that. I always wanted to be somewhere where I knew I could maximize my potential, not just as a player, but as DeAndre. And I knew Vrabel, being around him, that's what he brings out of you."

Hopkins said he also got good vibes from General Manager Ran Carthon during his free agency visit to Nashville last month.

"Great vibes from Ran," Hopkins said. "Ran is another guy who is a straight shooter, and he's not going to b.s. you. From the first conversation I got, that's the vibe I got from him. He's not someone who is just going to tell you what you want to hear – he is going to be honest with you, and that's what I like, and those are the kind of people I want to be around.

"Ran, we kicked it off instantly. And I know what he is trying to do with this organization, and I want to be part of it."

So, what does Hopkins feel like he brings to the Titans?

He's been dominant during the course of his career. In fact, since entering the NFL in 2013, Hopkins' reception total (853) leads the NFL. It is the fourth-highest total in NFL history in a player's first 10 seasons, trailing only Marvin Harrison (927), Brandon Marshall (882) and Torry Holt (869). Hopkins, Harrison, Marshall and Holt are also the only players in league history with at least 850 receptions, 11,000 receiving yards and 70 receiving touchdowns in their first 10 campaigns.

"Besides wins, (the Titans) are getting someone who is going to push people around me, and make everybody else's job a little easier," Hopkins said. "(The Titans) are getting someone who is a hard worker, someone who is going to practice hard, play hard, and push everybody around me as well to elevate their game.

"They are getting somebody who doesn't have an ego, someone who is coming in and bonding to the system."


Hopkins said he already has a good relationship with Titans running back Derrick Henry, as the two have trained together in the past.

Hopkins said he has a lot of respect for Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill, and he's looking forward to meeting all of his new teammates.

"I am very excited to play with Derrick and Ryan," Hopkins said. "I have admired those two guys ever since I have been playing against them when I was with Houston. They were hard battles, but one thing I always knew is I wanted to be around people like Derrick and Ryan because they are winners.

"I've worked out with Derrick, so Derrick and I actually know each other, not just on the field but off the field as well. And I know coming here, I can help out those two guys and they can help me out as well. I wanted to be around two people who have won before at a high level, and those two guys have."

After signing with the team on Monday, Hopkins took part in a photo shoot and also made the rounds as Ascension Saint Thomas Sports Park.

During his visit to Nashville last month, Hopkins got a taste of the city, visiting downtown and even making a trip to Nissan Stadium for CMA Fest.

He's been impressed by Music City and its residents.

"I love Nashville," Hopkins said. "Every time we've played here I always tried to get out in the city and see the development of it because I have been playing here for a long time. I've come here in town and seen the restaurants – Nashville, it' a good city, it's welcoming.

"As soon as I got off the plane, even when I was on the plane, my neighbor sitting beside me was helping me with certain things in the city, telling me where to go. So, Nashville is a welcoming city, and I can tell they respect the people here who are in the position I am in. I am happy to be a part of it."

In his career, Hopkins has totaled six 1,000-yard receiving seasons and four 100+ reception campaigns. His top statistical season came in 2018, registering 115 receptions for 1,572 yards and 11 touchdowns for the Texans.

Last year, he tallied 64 receptions for 717 yards and three touchdowns in nine games.

Still, Hopkins feels like he has something to prove in Tennessee.

A week ago, Hopkins sent this message on social media: "I always loved having haters and doubters but I appreciate it even more now. Titan up!!"

On Monday, Hopkins said he wants to show he can still get it done at a high level.

"Oh yeah, absolutely," Hopkins said. "I feel like I've always had something to prove, and that's how I play my game. The decision to come to Nashville, obviously, made a lot of people mad. But I kind of felt at home being here from the get-go, from early on.

"Tennessee is a team not many people put on their list, and I think I am not just speaking for myself, but the team as well, people are writing us off."

Decked out in a Titans uniform in between shots during a photo shoot, Hopkins said he's ready to get started.

The Titans are scheduled to practice for the first time in training camp on Wednesday.

"I am very excited to go," Hopkins said. "I wish we could go out there and practice tomorrow, but we have to do some conditioning. But this team and the roster that Ran and Vrabel have built is very competitive, and I am excited to be a part of it."


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