Back on July 28, 2011, the Houston Texans signed Johnathan Joseph as a free agent. J-Jo had played his entire career with the Bengals up to that point, and he was considered the second-best corner on the market that offseason behind Nnamdi Asomugha (remember him?). For the next nine (9) seasons, Johnathan Joseph proved to be the single best free agent signing the Houston Texans ever made.
Today, however, the J-Jo Era comes to an end in Houston, as the team announced it would part ways with Joseph so the corner can test free agency and presumably play a fifteenth NFL season elsewhere.
The #Texans and CB Johnathan Joseph have mutually agreed that he will enter free agency.— Houston Texans (@HoustonTexans) March 11, 2020
John McClain says there’s still a chance J-Jo returns to Houston, though it doesn’t seem likely, at least until his playing career is over.
Texans and Joseph agreed to release him so he can test free agent market. They haven’t closed the door on him returning for a 15th season. He’s the best FA signing in team history. Came from Cincy in 2011.— John McClain (@McClain_on_NFL) March 11, 2020
When Joseph’s career is over, I expect the Texans to try to sign him to work in their front office. Bill O’Brien loves to hire former players like Andre Johnson, Brian Cushing, TJ Yates and Akeem Dent.— John McClain (@McClain_on_NFL) March 11, 2020
Johnathan Joseph was a legitimate CB1 for most of his time in Houston. While he’d clearly lost a step or two over the last couple of seasons, I’m bummed that we’ve almost surely seen the last of him in a Texans uniform. He was a guy I truly enjoyed watching and rooting for, so even though seeing him move on is probably the correct decision from a management perspective, it stings. Rivers puts things in excellent perspective with this tweet:
In 2011, Wade Phillips came in, the Texans signed Johnathan Joseph and drafted J.J. Watt.— Rivers McCown (@riversmccown) March 11, 2020
The team that never had a negative defensive DVOA in franchise history went from 31st in defensive DVOA in 2010 to 6th in 2011, constantly were top 10 in Joseph’s prime.
Thanks JJo. https://t.co/mmejS56Gjb
Thanks for the memories, J-Jo. Best of luck moving forward.