And that's locking up Andre Johnson before he can hit the free agent market. This move is brilliant on two fronts. First, it shows Dre that the team is committed to him by paying him like the No. 1 WR and Pro Bowler he is before they actually have to do so. Secondly, the extension clears $6,000,000.00 under the cap that Rick Smith will presumably use to chase free agents. It's win-win, and Bob McNair should be applauded for being proactive with one of best players on the squad and the team's preeminent offensive weapon.
If Dre isn't the best wide receiver in football, he's at least certainly in the discussion. The Texans still have several problems, but at least one-half of the starting wide receiver corps isn't one of them. Knowing that Andre Johnson will be around for the next few years should give some reassurance to both the Texans fanbase and whoever's under center next season.