Yesterday, Football Outsiders published a list of one daring offseason move each NFL team should make. Some of them were truly bold, like the Chiefs trading for Patrick Peterson, the Colts trading for Antonio Brown, or or the Patriots offering multiple second and third round draft picks to the Bengals for A.J. Green. Others proposals were less shocking and more realistic, albeit unlikely to happen, like the Giants cutting Eli Manning.
I’d like to say what FO suggested for the Texans was truly outside the box, but I cannot. Here’s the single “daring” move they offered for your Houston Texans:
Houston Texans: Find a new set of cornerbacks.
The Texans were the best run defense in the league by DVOA in 2018, but they finished just seventh in defense overall, despite a pass rush featuring Jadeveon Clowney and J.J. Watt. The primary reason was poor coverage when the pass-rushers did not get home. On deep passes (more than 15 yards downfield), the Texans ranked 25th by DVOA.
Houston tried to address corner this past offseason, signing Aaron Colvin away from the Jaguars and hoping for a bounce-back season from former first-round pick Kevin Johnson. But Johnson went to injured reserve early, and Colvin finished the season as a healthy scratch. If Johnson is healthy, the Texans should release him before his fifth-year option becomes guaranteed at the start of the league year. Colvin is likely to be around, since his salary is fully guaranteed. Given the limited depth available at corner in free agency, though, a team that misses out might be willing to give a late-round pick for him.
That limited depth will hamper the Texans’ ability to completely rebuild the position group. What they have, though, is plenty of cap space and, unlike last year, multiple early draft picks. Trading Whitney Mercilus, who was moved away from his best use on the line of scrimmage, could provide more ammunition to address corner.
Sure, it’d be neat if the Texans entered September with a new starting set of cornerbacks. Realizing that position group is in dire need of reinforcement this offseason isn’t exactly ground-breaking. While I admit the last line about trading Whitney Mercilus, even if it’s something that’s been bandied about by some in the fan base for awhile now, would qualify as a surprising move, I doubt it’s on Brian Gaine’s radar.
With that, I’ll open the floor up to discussion. What would you suggest as a truly daring move the Texans could—or should—make this offseason?