With the official start of free agency just hours away for the NFL, the Houston Texans need to show some patience at the outset. While reported moves, like the move for quarterback Brian Hoyer, are not cap crushing, the fact is that usually a contract with a big name free agent on the first day of open season is crippling to the bottom line.
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In 2009 the Washington Redskins opened up the free agency boom by signing defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth to a seven-year $100 million deal, with $41 million of that guaranteed to the troubled player.
Of course he never saw his performance match that pay. In fact NFL.com ranks big Albert as the number one ultimate free agent bust in the history of the NFL.
"“Hanynesworth’s time in Washington was punctuated by failed conditioning tests and complaints about the team’s defensive schemes under Mike Shanahan”"
In 2012 the Dallas Cowboys signed cornerback Brandon Carr to a five-year $50.1 million deal after he spent four years with the Kansas City Chiefs. Carr was a decent corner in Kansas City, but has been the whipping boy for Cowboys fans since heading to big D.
Reports are that the Cowboys are actually asking Carr to take a cut in pay to stay with the team. The truth is Carr is not that bad of a player, he just isn’t nearly as good as the massive contract he signed.
In 2013 receiver Mike Wallace was paid $60 million over five years. This was after posting a season of 64 receptions for 836 yards and 8 touchdowns. Wallace is a good player and has been solid for the Dolphins. However, that is a hefty price tag to pay for a receiver who is not a game changer like a Dez Bryant or Calvin Johnson.
Desperate teams overpay for one player
The strangest part is these teams that go all-in on free agency during the first wave never seem to pan out. From the Philadelphia Eagles and their “Dream Team” to the Denver Broncos signing the all-2006 team last offseason, we see one team after another throw money out and get little in return.
Hopefully the Houston Texans have taken notice of this and will allow for some time to pass after the opening of the free agency period before they become players. After a few days, the contracts come down to reasonable prices and players begin to get paid what they are worth.
Desperate teams overpay for one player. Smart teams make the better moves and get the biggest bang for their buck. Here is to hoping the Texans play this smart.