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Kenny Britt

Sport: Football

Born: September 19, 1988

Town: Bayonne

Kenneth Lawrence Britt was born September 19, 1988 in Bayonne. Tall, fast and athletic, he excelled in every sport he played as a boy. As a teenager, Kenny used his blazing speed and leaping ability to become the star of the Bayonne High football and track teams. As a senior in 2005, he was a first-team All-Hudson County receiver, and was ranked as the #5 overall prospect in the state.

Kenny fielded offer from several top college programs—including West Virginia, Virginia, Illinois and UNC—but in the end chose to stay close to home, signing on with Rutgers. Under coach Greg Schiano, the football program was looking better than it had since the 1970s. Brian Leonard, Ray Rice and Mark Teel made up a superb backfield, while Tiquan Underwood led a quality receiving corps. The Scarlet Knights won their first nine games, including an epic victory of #3 Louisville. Kenny got into the starting lineup by mid-season and caught 29 passes for 440 yards.

As a sophomore, Kenny caught 62 passes for 1,232 yards and 8 touchdowns. Rutgers went 8–5 and beat Ball State 52--30 in the International Bowl in Toronto. Kenny reeled in a 47-yard TD in the rout. As a junior, Kenny caught 87 passes for 1,371 yards and was second in the NCAA with 114 yards per game. He notched 8 100-yard games, include a school-record five in a row, and was first-team All-Big East and a third-team All-American. The season was a Jekyll and Hyde experience. Rutgers lost 5 of its first 6 game…and then reeled off 7 wins in a row, including victories over Pitt, Syracuse, Louisville and NC State. In what would be his final college game, Kenny caught the winning pass in PapaJohns.com Bowl, a 42-yard strike that turned a 23–19 deficit into a 26–23 lead. San San Te booted a field goal to make the final 29-–23.

Kenny announced that he was entering the NFL Draft and the Tennessee Titans grabbed him with their first pick, at #30. Kenny’s speed played well in the pros. As a rookie, he made one of the season’s highlight catches when he snagged a 4th-down pass from Vince Young in the end zone to beat the Cardinals. He caught 42 passes as a rookie in 2009 and 42 more in 2010, though he missed four games due to injury. That season, he had a 3-TD, 225-yard day against the Eagles.

Kenny began 2011 fast, but tore up his knee in the season’s third game. He limped through the 2012 season, but still managed a career-high 45 receptions. After an injury-plagued 2013, the Titans cut him loose. A series of off-season run-ins with the police didn’t do him much good. In 2014, the St. Louis Rams signed him to a one-year contract. Though still nagged by injuries, he played well enough to earn a two-year deal through 2016.

In 2016, Kenny moved to LA with the Rams and finally fulfilled his potential as a Top 10 receiver. He played injury-free and became a key component in the team’s offense, giving young Case Keenum a quality target. Kenny’s highlight play was a one-handed TD grab of a 47-yard bomb against the Lions, but it was his skill running shorter routes and his ability to wriggle free after a catch that proved to be the big difference. Kenny finished the season with 68 catches and cracked the 1,000-yard mark against the 49ers in a Christmas Eve game. The last Ram to reach that plateau was Torry Holt in 2007. It marked the fifth time in nine seasons Kenny had led his team in receiving yards—including all three with the Rams.

In the off-season, Kenny signed a free agent deal with the Cleveland Browns, who were in the market for a big, fast playmaker. By any measure, Kenny fits that description.

 

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