The Texans‘ offensive line was bad in 2017.
That statement should shock no one. The holdout and subsequent trade of Duane Brown and the still injured status of Derek Newton meant that arguably the two most important positions on the offensive line were going to be manned by players of a lesser quality. The extent of that quality was sometimes quite impressive throughout the season—which is to say it was awful—but with the season over and Brian Gaine installed as the new GM, the question now has to be asked: What should be done with the Texans’ offensive line, specifically what’s left of it?
The Texans are in no position to completely revamp the offensive line in one offseason, thanks to a lack of draft assets and the relative mediocrity (or worse) of this years free agent offensive line class. So let us look within to see who and what can be salvaged heading forward.
Xavier Su’a-Filo, Chris Clark and Breno Giacomini are all slated to be free agents. Starting right guard Jeff Allen is a definite candidate to not be retained, which means that only Nick Martin (coming off another season-ending ankle surgery) and Julie’n Davenport could be slated to be the only returning starters. It should be noted that Davenport became a starter late in the season; we’re not talking about a guy who got a full season’s worth of first-team reps.
The Texans will presumably have back-ups Greg Mancz and David Quessenberry available, but even if Mancz and Quessenberry are slotted into empty slots, the team will still have sizable gaps left heading into the 2018 season. The glaring question is who, out of any of the core group that made up the Texans’ offensive line last season, do you think will be with the team to start next season? Do you think more than half will be back? Or will the majority of the line be razed, leaving the Texans to start with a semi-blank slate?