The Houston Texans free agency bonanza went on as the second week of free agency kicked off. The Texans added their arguably most significant free agent to date when they inked Dalton Schultz to a one year, $9 million contract. So, does this mean the Texans are done at the tight end position or will they need to add another one via the draft?
Putting together a roster is a lot like putting together a jigsaw puzzle. Some of the holes will be filled via free agency and some of the holes will be filled via the draft. The 2022 roster was closer to swiss cheese than anything solid. Not every hole is going to be filled, but hopefully Nick Caserio and company can put a sizeable dent in it.
We will look at the current members of the tight end group looking at the number of snaps they had last season, their overall Pro Football Focus grades, their grades as a receiver, run blocker, and pass blocker. Grades of 50 and above indicate a player that should be able to fit on any roster. Grades of 60 and above are usually indicative of players that should be rotational players. Grades of 70 or above are usually scored by solid starters.
Existing Tight Ends
Dalton Schultz— 938 snaps, 68.3 overall, 67.8 receiving, 65.9 run blocking, 51.1 pass blocking
Schultz has 17 touchdown catches over the past three seasons. Texans tight ends have 20 touchdown catches over the past three seasons. That’s all of them combined. We aren’t really sure what a Bobby Slowik offense looks like yet, but we know Schultz should be a significant part of it. His blocking might actually be underrated. In particular, the team has added a couple of linemen, Schultz, and Robert Woods as willing blockers in the running game.
Brevin Jordan— 271 snaps, 53.7 overall, 58.9 receiving, 44.3 run blocking, 55.3 pass blocking
Mr. December is back for another season. However, his time may be running out. Texans coaches and Texans fans had high hopes for Jordan this past season, but he ended up doing the same thing in 2022 that he did in 2021. He was a ghost until the calendar clicked over to December. He has worn out his welcome with random precision and he might be a candidate for the chopping block in training camp.
Teagan Quitoriano— 322 snaps, 49.4 overall, 59.9 receiving, 44.0 run blocking, 55.4 pass blocking
Mr. Unspellable is right where Jordan was coming into this season. He missed much of training camp and the first part of the season with injuries. He showed some flashes of a receiving ability we didn’t know he had. If he can build on that he could end up being an underrated asset moving forward.
Mason Schreck— 53 snaps, 53.6 overall, 48.0 receiving, 60.0 run blocking, 66.0 pass blocking
The life of an undrafted free agent is a lonely one. When a team has no draft equity invested in you then you are cannon food. Schreck is a likely cut candidate even though he flashed some skills last season. 53 snaps is less than one game’s worth of snaps, so he will have to demonstrate some superior special teams play to keep this spot on the roster.
Nick Caserio is anything but consistent. He signs all of his free agents to one and two year contracts. It means he can cut and run with ease. It also means that relying on Schultz to anchor the unit is probably not a wise bet. Schultz does give the coaches cover to develop a prospect in advance of 2024. So, don’t be surprised if the Texans take a tight end on day two of the draft even with Schultz in tow.