A week or two ago, Albert Breer reported in a snippet that the Texans and Jadeveon Clowney were in discussion to finalize a much anticipated extension that would keep the first overall pick of the 2014 NFL Draft in Houston for years to come. The two parties were reportedly making a lot of progress toward that goal. Yet there was no talk or rumor of when and how much the new deal would be (though that didn’t keep us from speculating).
But now there is. According to Jordan Schultz of Yahoo Sports, the Texans should reach a deal with Clowney before training camp at the latest, and it will be in the $18-$18.5 million per year guaranteed range.
Per source, #Texans and Jadeveon Clowney are “close” to a contract extension. @AlbertBreer first reported “a lot of progress” being made. I’m told in the neighborhood of 18-18.5 guaranteed per year, over 5. Little doubt it gets done - by camp at the latest.— Jordan Schultz (@Schultz_Report) April 5, 2018
That is a lot of money. It would be the highest cap hit the Texans would have this season. It would also make Clowney the second highest paid edge defender in the NFL, trailing only Von Miller.
The contract amount is of little concern. The cap goes up. Houston will have cap space again next season. Clowney is the best run-stopping edge defender in football and should only get better. What is interesting is when Houston signs Clowney. He’s of the same caliber and draft class as Khalil Mack and Aaron Donald, though he hasn’t been as productive. If Houston extends Clowney before Los Angeles (Rams) extends Donald or the Raiders extend Mack, the Texans could save a bit on this deal by getting the worm.
In related former first round pick news, another bit of reporting from this same ‘insider’ claims the Texans are looking to also extend Whitney Mercilus before the the 2018 season begins.
Also re #Texans, the team has made it a priority to extend Whitney Mercilus as well, before next season, per source.— Jordan Schultz (@Schultz_Report) April 5, 2018
This is more surprising. The Houston Texans don’t generally extend players that have more than a year left on their current contract. With two years left on the extension he signed in 2015, Mercilus has a cap hit of $5,956,250 this year and $7,300,000 in 2019. This is about what Derrick Morgan makes. There is no need to rush and extend Mercilus. He’s 29 years old, and he’s coming off a torn pectoral. Unless the Texans think they can get an enormous bargain by extending the linebacker this early, the team focusing on extending Mercilus right now doesn’t make much sense.
Anyways, the amount and when Clowney is reported to be extended will probably come to pass. This Mercilus thing probably won’t, in my opinion. Regardless, these are two things to keep in mind after the 2018 NFL Draft as the Texans finish ironing out their roster.