November 13, 2011; Tampa, FL, USA; Houston Texans inside linebacker DeMeco Ryans (59) prior to the game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

DeMeco Ryans traded to Philadelphia Eagles

According to Fox 26’s Mark Berman on Twitter:

Texans are trading LB DeMeco Ryans to the Eagles for an undisclosed draft pick. Deal pending Ryans passing a physical.

The Texans will actually receive multiple undisclosed draft picks in return for trading LB DeMeco Ryans to the Eagles. He must pass physical.

This is sad news for Texans fans who have grown accustomed to seeing Capt’ Meco directing traffic for the Texans defense in years past. But as a football move, this trade makes a lot of sense.

First, we all know about the Texans’ cap-stricken situation this offseason; trading Ryans will help alleviate the situation immensely. Despite having been restructured last season, his contract still takes up about $6 million in cap space. And his numbers last season was nowhere near his career norms before the Achilles injury he suffered in 2010. If Ryans had performed at his pre-2010 level last season, he would have been well worth the contract. But it’s extremely tough to fully come right back to form following such a devastating Achilles injury, especially for a position that requires high mobility as linebacker. The Texans aren’t interested in taking a chance at such a hefty price, therefore it’s understandable that they were willing to let him go.

Furthermore, Meco’s run-stopping playstyle is better suited for a 4-3 defense rather than Wade Phillips’ 3-4 system. Brian Cushing has developed into a versatile and unstoppable middle linebacker and should take over as the anchor in the middle of the Texans defense. The emergence of Cushing definitely played a role in giving Rick Smith and Gary Kubiak confidence to trade Ryans away.

Going back to the trade, we don’t have the details of the draft picks the Texans are getting from the Eagles yet. All we know is that there will be more than one. This 2012 draft class is deep on talented middle linebackers and with additional picks, the Texans can restock and develop a Cushing 2.0 or two. Also, with the money freed up from Ryans’ contract, look for the Texans to address other glaring needs.

First Eric Winston, then Super Mario, now Capt’ Meco. As fans, we are deeply saddened to see such beloved players leave the franchise.  But football is a business, and we need to move on. ToroTimes would like to thank  DeMeco Ryans for all he’s done for the Texans and wish him the best in his new Eagles uniform.

UPDATE: The Texans will obtain the Eagles’ fourth-round pick and a switch of picks in the third round. Not as good as expected, but an additional pick is always helpful.

 

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