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Texans 2015 Free Agent Review

Discussion in 'Houston Texans' started by Nimo, Jan 19, 2016.

  1. Nimo

    Nimo Member

    Jul 16, 2012
    Likes Received:

    A closer look at the Houston Texans free agent additions prior to the start of the 2015 season.

    Taking a closer look at the Houston Texans free agent additions for the 2015 season, the group was a mixed bag, comprised primarily of roster fillers, with only one real difference maker from the free agent group. Fortunately, the team did not spend much money in free agency, learning from previous mishaps.

    Free Agent Additions

    Stevie Brown (1 year, $825k, $40k signing bonus)

    The former New York Giants safety, Stevie Brown, was set to come in and compete for a starting job next to newly signed Rahim Moore. That goal was far from realized, with other players passing him up on the depth chart to the point where Brown was watching younger safeties get work before him during practice.
    Brown was released almost three months after he signed. It only cost the Texans $40k in dead cap space for 2015 to learn that he was not the answer.

    Vince Wilfork (2 years, $9 million, $5 million guaranteed)

    The man in the middle of the Texans defense, Vince Wilfork, ran hot and cold all season. Many will not discuss it but Wilfork was too heavy and that affected his play on the field. He could not move effectively and there were plenty of times where he was easily blocked by centers with little effort. However, when teams tried to run the power game at Wilfork, he held his own and created issues for the opposing offenses. Wilfork was a two down player for the defense and to make matters worse, he was largely ineffective as a pass rusher.
    It was a tough go for Wilfork in his first season with the Texans. While he brought positives like leadership and experience to the locker room, those only go so far; play on game days trumps these attributes. The reality of the situation is, unless Wilfork gets his weight under control, he will continue to be a contributor and not a difference maker.

    Nate Washington (1 year, $1 million, $30k guaranteed)

    The signing of the veteran wide receiver looked like a sneak deal with what Washington has been able to accomplish over his career. With a history of being able to stay healthy and on the field, the team hoped he would be a veteran presence across from DeAndre Hopkins who could also stretch the field.
    Missing two games due to a hamstring injury and slowed by a hip injury late in the season, Washington was plagued by drops and lead the team in that category. For a starter in this offense, he offered very little to make a difference on game day. However, he had a few games where he looked the part, like in week one vs the Kansas City Chiefs and against his former team, the Tennessee Titans.
    The addition of Nate Washington was a one year experiment which appears to be coming to an end with younger players waiting to get the chance.

    Cecil Shorts III (2 years, $6 million, $2.5 guaranteed)

    The Texans were on the look out for a slot wide receiver and felt like they found a potential match with Cecil Shorts III. Coming from Jacksonville, Shorts' first season in Houston was plagued with drops and injuries which kept him off the field. The exact same things that happened in his previous four seasons in Jacksonville happened again this season in Houston.
    Shorts missed five games due to injuries: shoulder, groin, and hamstring injuries limited his time on the field. With an offense looking for an identity, Shorts not being out on the field caused the Texans to be stuck in neutral all season offensively.
    Shorts never cracked a 100-yard game on the season and, in the Texans offense, the slot wide receiver has the chance to be a volume player. Shorts was set to be an important piece of the offense but it did not work out the way the team planned.

    Chris Polk (1 year, $660k)

    It was clear Bill O’Brien liked what Chris Polk brought to the team and he kept his spot on the team after Arian Foster went down in training camp. Polk’s play was directly related to how well Alfred Blue was playing. He was a spot player for the Texans and his best day was against the Buffalo Bills rushing 12 times for 61 yards.
    Polk was used in downhill situations in the run game and was asked to keep it in between the tackles. Here for insurance, Polk was a roster filler and it is likely to be one and done for Polk moving forward.

    Brian Hoyer (2 years, $10.5 million, $3.75 guaranteed)

    Coach Bill O’Brien and the Texans went after Brian Hoyer soon after he was released by the Cleveland Browns. Hoyer competed for the starting quarterback position and his time at quarterback for the Texans ended up a mixed bag for Hoyer.
    Hoyer set career highs in completion percentage (60.7%), touchdowns (19), and quarterback rating (91.4), and he looked capable at times. When the Texans needed Hoyer to carry the team he couldn’t and his lack of accuracy came into play too many times. Uncatchable and erratically thrown footballs did not help receivers and, after suffering two concussions, his play during the final regular season game and in the wildcard round was nothing nice. Hoyer’s final stretch of the season doomed the Texans and he registered one of the worst performances ever in playoff history.
    Hoyer could no doubt be an adequate backup for the Texans or another team in the NFL but the starter experiment should come to an end.

    Rahim Moore (3 years, $12 miilon, $4.5 guaranteed)

    There was excitement with the signing of Rahim Moore from Denver. His speed and athleticism gave hope to a defense looking for a difference maker playing the deep middle. From day one, Moore worked in mini-camps, OTAs, and training camp as the clear cut starter. There were early signs that Moore was trying to get acclimated to the Texans defensive scheme during the preseason and hopes that he could straighten it out during the season.
    As the season progressed, it was clear Moore was out of his element and could not provide what Romeo Crennel needed from the position. Moore took poor angles in run support and did not look enthusiastic to play physically when needed. That combination and a total meltdown against the Miami Dolphins resulted in Moore being a healthy scratch for 10 games including the playoffs.
    Moore was a disappointment on the Texans and it should be the first and final season for Moore, who was passed up by younger players on the roster for his spot on defense.

    Quintin Demps (1 year, $870k)

    The one bright spot for the Texans via the free agency market, Quintin Demps saved a safety position that had depended on Stevie Brown and Rahim Moore to be the “penciled in starters." If Demps was not available, there is no telling where the defense would have been by season's end.
    Demps was able to get back into a defense with which he was comfortable, and this was clear from the first day he arrived to training camp. Remember, Demps was added mid-camp and took over from the day he showed up during camp. He intercepted a pass during his first practice and never looked back, mentoring Andre Hal and Eddie Pleasant along the way. The trio worked well together during the season, centered around Demps' solid play.
    Demps was only signed to a one-year deal and how the Texans view him for the future is unknown but it was clear Demps was the best free agent signing prior to the start of the 2015 season.

    What do you think about the Texans' 2015 free agents? How would you grade them?
  2. Fyreball

    Fyreball Contributing Member

    Apr 8, 2009
    Likes Received:
    If McNair is going to continue to tell us that Rick Smith is doing a "great job", somebody needs to slap him in the face with this article.
  3. Coach AI

    Coach AI Contributing Member

    Feb 15, 1999
    Likes Received:
    what a **** show.

    Though I do ease up a little tiny bit on the drops for Washington and Shorts, considering a part of that was bricks fired from a cannon named Mallett. Both have had solid performances in previous years for other teams (though injury has always been an issue for Shorts).
  4. K-Low_4_Prez

    K-Low_4_Prez Member

    Dec 25, 2011
    Likes Received:
    Honestly I think some of the guys played bigger roles than you give them credit for... Wilfork was a major part of one of the best defenses in the league.

    Washington was a solid #2 receiver and shorts was valuable for his versatility and helped us have one of the more unique offenses in the nfl.

    Sure they aren't stars but they were worth they contracts they got and they helped us reach the postseason. I wouldn't mind all three of those guys returning along with Demps. Hoter was the biggest problem imo, we should have just kept Fitz.
  5. Spacemoth

    Spacemoth Contributing Member

    Jul 30, 2007
    Likes Received:
    ...and I stopped reading
  6. Nimo

    Nimo Member

    Jul 16, 2012
    Likes Received:
    I'd rank them (taking into account their contracts and roles)

    Washington - outplayed his contract
    Shorts - versatile when healthy
    Moore - Yes, he was worse than a guy who didn't make the team.
  7. ima_drummer2k

    ima_drummer2k Contributing Member

    Oct 18, 2002
    Likes Received:
    I remember being excited about the Rahim Moore signing. LOL... That guy made Matt Stevens look like Ronnie Lott.

    The good thing is that none of these contracts really hurt us in the long term.

    Props to Demps who was basically signed as an insurance policy and barely made the 53-man roster, then ended up being the best safety on the team.
  8. conquistador#11

    Jun 30, 2006
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    i don't know why people are bashing the washington and shorts signings. b.o.b. wants the 2nd and 3rd in this offense to catch around 40 balls. they did just that. hey washington, you want catch no.5o? no thanks, i'm going to go ahead and drop it. 47 is good.

    hal and demps overcame raheem the not so dream's suckage.
    hoyer? just be grateful that yates plus weeden showed up and for winning those clutch games. A+signings right there and probably the most important. Hoyett wouldn't have gotten it done.

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