Honey badger is headed to Kansas City. Bob Levey/Getty Images
The Houston Texans and Tyrann Mathieu was a one year mutually beneficial relationship as he heads to Kansas City in free agency.
Former Texans' S Tyrann Mathieu intends to sign a three-year, $42 million deal with the Kansas City Chiefs, per a league source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 11, 2019
The Texans reportedly were ready to spend on the player known as Honey Badger but not nearly what he ended up with in Kansas City.
Texans offered Mathieu $11 mil per year. Chiefs got him for $14. That's double what he made in his one season in Houston when he signed for one year and $7 mil.
— John McClain (@McClain_on_NFL) March 11, 2019
Mathieu signed a one-year deal with the Texans last offseason for $7 million. He would start all 16 games for the team manning the backed of the defense with Kareem Jackson, Justin Reid, and later Andre Hal.
The sixth-year safety rattled off 89 tackles good for third best on the team and tying his career high. He also had two interceptions to go along with a fumble recovery and three sacks as Mathieu was often used in the team's blitz packages. It was the first time Mathieu had more than one sack in a season.
The Texans frequently praised Mathieu for his locker room leadership as well.
"He's a guy that really meant a lot to our locker room," said Texans head coach Bill O'Brien at the NFL Scouting Combine. "I've said it time and time again, this guy came in and was there from the offseason program and then at the end of training camp was voted a team captain. I think that says a lot about the impact he had – not just as a player, he's a good football player, he's a smart football player, he's a versatile player – but also, what he meant leadership-wise in the locker room."
The departure of Mathieu leaves the Texans with Andre Hal and Justin Reid as the only safeties who have played significant snaps in the 2018 season.
Deuces. His impact was overrated. With Justin Reid's emergence and Andre Hal still on the team paying a player who has likely shown his ceiling to the NFL what the Chiefs paid him wasn't good business for the Texans. They were priced out of their smartly set budget on Mathieu.
They should absolutely see what the number is for other safeties on the market. If Mathieu is worth $14 million a year then Earl Thomas is worth more than that. Adrian Amos, who is 25 a free agent after playing a ton for the Bears, is a name I would love to see the Texans chase. Bringing back Kareem Jackson and playing him only at safety isn't the worst idea ever. Jackson was one of the best players on the Texans when he was playing safety last year.
UPDATE: Kareem Jackson has signed with the Broncos.
One of the big factors that led to the Texans' loss to the Jaguars on Sunday was the secondary. Multiple flags for pass interference gave Jacksonville more opportunities to pick up first downs and score points.
Can confirm #Texans backup CB Shaq Griffin was cut.
Griffin started 6 games this year when Derek Stingley was out with a hamstring.
— DJ Bien-Aime (@Djbienaime) November 29, 2023
So it's no surprise that DeMeco Ryans is making some changes to his defense this week. According to several reports, Texans corner Shaq Griffin has been cut.
Nickel corner Tavierre Thomas was flagged for PI more than once on Sunday, and was burned badly by Jaguars receiver Calvin Ridley for a touchdown.
DeMeco was asked after the game if he considered replacing Thomas with Desmond King or Shaq Griffin. Ryans didn't give a definitive answer, but it looks like we got one today.
One has to wonder if Desmond Kings' experience playing nickel was the reason for his promotion to the active roster and why Griffin was released. If Thomas continues to struggle, King looks like the next man up to replace him.
#Texans activate Denzel Perryman, promote Desmond King to active roster, release Shaq Griffin, sign Matt Ammendola and Garret Wallow to practice squad, released Gerrid Doaks from practice squad and placed Tytus Howard (knee-patellar tendon surgery pending) on injured reserve https://t.co/knyyoqo7yC
— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) November 29, 2023
The Texans also made some other adjustments to their roster on Wednesday, per Aaron Wilson. Linebacker Denzel Perryman returns from suspension, kicker Matt Ammendola and linebacker Garret Wallow join the practice squad. They also released Gerrid Doaks from the practice squad.
The other big piece of news involves left guard Tytus Howard. He heads to injured reserve, ending his season after hurting his knee against Jacksonville.