Texans Coach shares Key Insights on Five Free Agents the Texans Must Re-Sign…

The Houston Texans find themselves in a favorable position with both cap space and draft capital, presenting the opportunity to transition from a mere playoff hopeful to a legitimate Super Bowl contender. To achieve this transformation, the Texans must strategically navigate the offseason, ensuring the retention of key players from their 2023 success stories before making high-profile signings. With quarterback C.J. Stroud leading the charge, the focus should be on bolstering the team’s defense to contend with formidable opponents like the Baltimore Ravens.

Foremost among the pending free agents is edge rusher Jonathan Greenard, the Texans’ most prolific pass rusher in the previous season. Greenard’s impressive statistics, leading the team in sacks, tackles for loss, and quarterback hits, make him a priority for re-signing. While overshadowed by star counterpart Will Anderson Jr., Greenard’s potential as a strong second-edge rusher solidifies Houston’s position with one of the league’s top-edge duos. Despite his notable production, Greenard is not expected to demand an exorbitant contract, making his retention a feasible and impactful move for the Texans.

Moving to the second level of the defense, linebacker Blake Cashman emerges as another essential candidate for an extension. Despite not commanding a substantial payday based on his track record, Cashman proved to be one of Houston’s standout defenders as the season progressed. His athleticism and evident development under head coach DeMeco Ryans make re-signing Cashman a pragmatic choice, avoiding the uncertainties associated with pursuing alternative options or high-risk acquisitions.

In the secondary, cornerback Steven Nelson stands out as a consistent performer and a valuable veteran presence. Despite the unit’s struggles with explosive plays, Nelson’s career-high five interceptions and seamless adaptation to Ryans’ defensive scheme make him a key contributor worth retaining. A shorter-term deal for the 31-year-old provides a mutually beneficial arrangement, allowing Houston to maintain defensive stability without committing to a long-term contract that could hinder future strategic moves.

Shifting focus to the offensive side, running back Devin Singletary’s impending free agency raises questions about the team’s backfield strategy. While the league trends away from substantial contracts for running backs, Singletary’s compatibility with offensive coordinator Bobby Slowik’s system and his unique technical skills warrant consideration. A deal within a reasonable range, potentially not exceeding $5 million per year, allows the Texans flexibility in seeking additional upgrades while retaining Singletary’s valuable contributions within a committee approach.

Finally, wide receiver Noah Brown emerges as a candidate deserving of a salary increase. Recognizing the symbiotic relationship between Brown and Slowik, the offensive coordinator optimized Brown’s performance, particularly evident in two standout games with other receivers sidelined. Brown’s proficiency as a run blocker and versatility in playing both inside and outside positions make him a valuable asset among deep receivers. While not likely to secure a starting role on another team, Brown’s return to Houston aligns with the team’s depth needs and offensive strategy.

In summary, the Texans have the financial means to secure key players who contributed significantly to their 2023 success. Retaining Greenard, Cashman, Nelson, Singletary, and Brown forms a foundation for sustained competitiveness, allowing the team to strategically pursue further enhancements and potentially emerge as serious contenders for the AFC South crown.

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