An insight into why the Packers passed on Will Fuller and the Texans

The Texans and Packers couldn't agree on a trade. Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Coming into the season, the Houston Texans had high expectations for Will Fuller. For the first time in his career, Fuller had an opportunity to prove himself as a top-tier receiver — given the absence of DeAndre Hopkins. While playing out the final year of his rookie contract, Fuller has flourished in his new role.

The 26-year-old wideout is on pace to record a career-best in receiving yards, while showing his improved durability playing in all seven games so far this season. Alas, Fuller's on-field production has not converted into wins for the Texans.

Houston enters Week 9 against the Jacksonville Jaguars sitting at 1-6 on the season. Their atrocious record led to the general belief that the organization would be sellers at the trade deadline. Among the many players projected to be on the move was Fuller.

Several teams around the league had their eyes set on making a trade for the Notre Dame prodigy, but none more so than the Green Bay Packers — who expressed interest in adding Fuller's services alongside their All-Pro receiver Davante Adams. A depleted roster and lack of draft capital would have resulted in most teams taking any deal to recoup some assets. But interim head coach Romeo Crennel refused to make any substantial offer for peanuts.

"I wouldn't even put the No. 1 wide receiver label on me," Fuller said. I feel like we all can get it done. I don't have any added pressure. We're just out there having fun trying to get a win."

In any potential deal regarding Fuller, the Texans were seeking a second-round pick in return. The lofty asking price is the motive to why the Packers organization disagreed on whether or not to make a move for Fuller during the final hours of the trade deadline — according to Dianna Russini of ESPN.

In hindsight, it made sense for the Packers to stand pat and not mortgage their future in a trade for Fuller. Had Green Bay sent a second-round pick to Houston, the Packers might have fallen short of getting equal value in exchange.

Fuller's durability has been the pinnacle of his success this season, but it doesn't erase the injury-prone stigma that has plagued his career thus far. In addition to his health, does the acquisition of Fuller put the Packers closer to holding the Vince Lombardi Trophy? Not really. Adding a playmaker like Fuller would have undoubtedly improved Green Bay's chances, but not enough to push the Packers ahead of the Buccaneers and Seahawks.

However, the Packers' most significant reason why they elected not to make a deal for Fuller may center round his pending free agency. With Fuller scheduled to become a free agent at the conclusion of the season, there is a high possibility that the fifth-year receiver could have been an end-of-the-season rental for the Packers.

Given all the uncertainties, the Packers felt it was more reasonable for them to pass on Fuller. According to John McClain of the Houston Chronicle, Green Bay was not the only team unwilling to pay the Texans' high asking price, as teams offered fourth and fifth-round picks for the Philadelphia native.

"I told him [Fuller] that I wanted him on the team, and I wanted all of these guys on the team," Crennel said during his media availability on Wednesday. "I did not want to trade anybody. Plus, I said I wasn't taking peanuts, and nobody came through with a deluxe nuts package. If there had been some deluxe nuts laid out there on the table, it could have been a different deal."

Coty M. Davis is a reporter for ESPN 97.5 Houston/SportsMap covering the Houston Texans. He is also the co-host of Locked On Texans, a part of the Locked On Podcast Network. Follow Coty on Twitter @CotyDavis_24.

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Yuli Gurriel had a monster night at the plate Friday. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images.

Although they lost the series 2-1, the Astros ended their road trip with a nice win over the Yankees to head home on a positive note. On Friday, they welcomed in the Toronto Blue Jays and former teammate George Springer, currently on the IL, to start a three-game series and long homestand. They had an excellent night at the plate, along with a strong start from Jose Urquidy, cruising past the Blue Jays to take the opener.

Final Score: Astros 10, Blue Jays 4

Astros' Record: 17-15, third in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Jose Urquidy (3-2)

Losing Pitcher: Ross Stripling (0-2)

Jays strike first, then Houston responds and never looks back

It first appeared that Urquidy may be in for a long night, giving up two solo home runs early in Friday's game, one to Bo Bichette in the top of the first with one out to put Toronto up 1-0, then another to Danny Jansen in the top of the third. However, Urquidy would lock-in, and his offense would back him up strongly.

Houston ended up sending nine batters to the plate in the bottom of the second, getting two runs on a homer by Carlos Correa, then later loading the bases to set up an RBI walk by Alex Bregman. In the bottom of the fifth, with a one-run lead at 3-2, Yuli Gurriel expanded the lead to three runs on a two-run shot.

Gurriel went on to have a fantastic night, going 4-for-4 at the plate with 4 RBI. His third of those came in the bottom of the seventh, extending the lead again with an RBI single to make it 6-2. Kyle Tucker made it a five-run game that same inning with an RBI double, then more insurance came in the bottom of the eighth. They reached double-digits that inning, with Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez, and Yuli Gurriel, his fourth of the night, all getting an RBI to make it 10-2.

Urquidy finishes seven, then Emanuel finishes it off

Those gave Urquidy plenty of support, though he would bounce back after the two early homers and have a nice night on the mound. He allowed just two other hits, working around both, en route to a seven-inning two-run performance to earn him the win. His final line: 7.0 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 2 HR, 84 P.

He likely could have gone longer, but Dusty Baker turned the ball over to Kent Emanuel to wrap things up with the significant lead. He did so, despite allowing a two-run home run to former-Astro Teoscor Hernandez in the top of the ninth to make the score 10-4. The win kept the Astros above .500 and two games back of the A's, who sit atop the AL West standings.

Up Next: The middle game of this series will be a 6:10 PM start Saturday night. The pitching matchup will be Steven Matz (4-2, 4.78 ERA) for Toronto and the electric Cristian Javier (3-0, 1.75 ERA) for Houston.

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