Derrick Henry is a running back who plays for the NFL side Tennessee Titans. He was born in Florida and set the national high school football record for rushing yards. In college, Derrick Henry won several awards like the Heisman Trophy and the Maxwell Award. He has the ability to overpower defenders during rushing. He is nicknamed ‘King Henry’ due to his dominating playing style as one of the best running backs in the league.
Derrick Henry’s Early Life and Background
Derrick Lamar Henry Jr. was born in Yulee, Florida, a suburb of Jacksonville, to Stacy Veal and Derrick Henry Sr., aged 15 and 16 respectively. Henry's father, known as "Big D", was absent for much of his childhood, having been arrested 20 times for various crimes including drug and prostitution-related offenses, and was consequently in and out of prison and had trouble maintaining employment. His mother became a hemodialysis technician. Henry was raised primarily by his grandmother, Gladys, who nicknamed him "Shocka", as his birth shocked the whole family, given his parents' young ages. He developed a close relationship to his grandmother, whom he cites as very influential in his upbringing. He attended Yulee High School where he excelled in football, basketball and track. He was a lethal running back for the school team and set a record of 12,124 career rushing yards (highest in High School football).
Henry attended college at the University of Alabama. As an Alabama Crimson Tide player, Henry won several accolades like Heisman trophy, Walter Camp Award, Maxwell Award, and the Doak Walker Award. He helped the team win the 2016 College Football Playoff National Championship.
Derrick Henry NFL Draft
Coming out of Alabama, Henry was projected by the majority of analysts to be either drafted in the late first or second round. Scouts regarded his main assets to be his large frame, violent running, ability to break tackles with ease, speed, long strides, superior conditioning, and consistent play. The main concerns were about the wear and tear his body took as a workhorse at Alabama, his slow acceleration, average foot quickness, below-average catching ability, narrow based running style, sluggish cutbacks, and running tall.The explosive running back declared for the 2016 NFL Draft. He was drafted by the Tennessee Titans in the 2nd round of the Draft. He was overall pick number 45 and the second running back to be selected in the draft. Notable players from the 2016 NFL draft also include running back Ezekiel Elliot, wide receiver Tyreek Hill, and defensive end Joey Bosa.
Derrick Henry’s NFL Journey
Henry was drafted by the Tennessee Titans in 2016 and spent his rookie season as a backup to veteran running back DeMarco Murray. His first NFL game was also his first NFL start, which was against the Minnesota Vikings. Henry scored his first pro-career touchdown in Week 8 against the Jacksonville Jaguars. He finished his rookie season with 110 carries for 490 yards. He was a backup running back for most of the 2017 season too. In 15 appearances, Henry made 2 starts and made 5 touchdowns. He even featured in the postseason games for the Titans and ran for 184 yards and a touchdown.
Henry transitioned to a starter in the 2018 season. He set a record for the most rushing yards in a single game (238) in the 2018 season, in the Week 14 game against the Jaguars. His performance got him the AFC Offensive Player of the Month in December 2018, and Derrick Henry established himself as a force to be reckoned with. Derrick started the 2019 season with great performances and ultimately led the Titans to the 2019 playoffs. In the postseason games, Henry rushed for at least 150 yards in each of his three games (becoming only the 2nd NFL player to do so).
In the 2020 season, Henry made NFL history by becoming the only running back to surpass 2000 rushing yards in school, college and the NFL. He also led the league in rushing touchdowns (17). In 2020, Henry would again lead the league in rushing yards and touchdowns and became the eighth player in NFL history to rush for over 2,000 yards in a single season, and the second Tennessee Titan to do so. He was named Offensive Player of the Year in 2020. Henry missed the majority of the 2021 season due to a Jones fracture in Week 8. He returned to the starting lineup and featured in the Titan’s Divisional Round games against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Derrick Henry’s teams
Tennessee Titans (2016-Present)
Henry has been playing for the Titans since 2016. He first signed a four-year contract worth $5.40 million. There was a guaranteed amount of $3.30 million and a signing bonus of $2.13 million. In 2020 Henry signed another four-year contract worth $50 million. He helped the Titans win two Divisional Championships and make it to the playoffs four times in his six year career with them. He holds several franchise records and has also made it to the Pro-Bowl twice. Henry is utilized for his running abilities rather than his catching abilities. His strength is helpful for the Titans in later stages of the game when opponents are worn down.
Derrick Henry Awards and Honors
NFL Offensive Player of the Year
First Team All-Pro
Second Team All-Pro
NFL Rushing Yards Leader
NFL Rushing Touchdowns Leader
Heisman Trophy (college)
Maxwell Award (college)
Doak Walker Award (college)
Walter Camp Award (college)
Unanimous All-American (college)
Derrick Henry NFL Records
First player to record a 200+ yard and 4+ touchdown game on fewer than 22 carries
Longest run in NFL history at 99 yards (tied with Tony Dorsett – 1982)
First player in NFL history with more than 180 rushing yards in three consecutive games
Most rushing yards in the first 4 playoff games: 561
First player to have 180+ rushing yards in consecutive playoff games
Derrick Henry Net Worth
Derrick Henry has a net worth of $10 million dollars. Most of that money has come from the football field. His current contract is for twelve million dollars every year, for the next 3 years. His current contract is going to end in 2024 after that he is going to test the free agency.
Derrick Henry Contract
Derrick Henry signed with the Tennessee Titans in 2020, agreeing to a four-year, $50,000,000 deal that featured a $12,000,000 signing bonus, $25,500,000 in guaranteed money, and an average annual salary of $12,500,000. Henry will make $4,000,000 in base pay, $1,000,000 in roster bonuses, and $9,000,000 in restructure bonuses in 2022. He will also incur a cap hit of $9,367,647 and a dead cap value of $14,250,000.
Henry never had his father around much, as a kid. He was primarily raised by his late grandmother and owes a lot of his success to her. Derrick Henry has been dating Adrianna Rivas since 2016. The couple has been raising their daughter who was born in 2020. They live in Nashville, Tennessee with two pet dogs Nala and Nino.