This bold strategy for retooling the Texans would turn the roster on its head
The Texans are a mess. Wait...that would be an understatement. They're more like a dumpster full of by-product outside a hot dog factory that's been sitting for six weeks after being flooded and set ablaze. Yes, it's that bad of a situation. They're devoid of talent, lack the draft picks to make up cheap labor, and have been left in a position of cap hell that's unavoidable. Any general manager that takes this job will need to be given a long leash in order to reshape this roster. Any head coach that comes in will need just as long a leash because he will be working with expired ingredients when he enters this kitchen.
Bill O'Brien did his best to hand out the worst possible contracts he could, it has put the team in a position to have to make some bold moves. While listening to The Press Box on ESPN Houston this Monday, Charlie Pallilo laid out a pretty bold move for the incoming Texans general manager (it starts around the 29:18 mark). Charlie thinks the incoming regime should make roster cuts this offseason in order to set themselves up for a breakout in the '22 season. Pallilo's idea of making several cuts to guys with bad contracts this offseason, and taking the dead money cap hit, it sets the team up to have more money to spend going into the '22 season when they'd also own a full complement of draft picks.
By cutting Whitney Mercilus, Randall Cobb, Eric Murray, Ka'imi Fairbairn, Benardrick McKinney, and Zach Cunningham, the team could open up around $16 million in cap space immediately despite the dead money they'd have to carry. In addition to these moves, he also suggested cutting J.J. Watt, if you can't find a trade partner, and rolling over his $17.5 million in salary to the '22 season in order to stay at the 90% money spent per collective bargaining agreement rules. Bold moves. Yes. But is it worth it?
Detractors would say don't do it. They'd argue you're setting yourself up for failure in the '21 season by getting rid of experienced guys and filling their roster spots with cheaper and possibly not as talented options. Why set yourself up for failure and absorb so much dead money in the '21 season? Why punt on the season without keeping those guys around? A team should always try to win no matter what. To them I'd say, kick rocks!
I was listening live when Pallilo laid out this plan and wholeheartedly agree with him. People need to come to grips with the fact that the '21 season will be a wash. This team isn't getting better heading into next season. They don't have the draft picks necessary to get game-changing young players on the cheap and shouldn't spend the cap space they have left trying to acquire players to fill the voids on this roster. This allows them to maximize their cap space heading into the '22 offseason after a presumably bad '21 season. That bad season in '21 also yields a full compliment of high draft picks that they could use to retool the roster more quickly. As bold as O'Brien was in making this team the laughingstock of the league, the incoming regime will have to be even more bold to turn this disaster around more quickly.