In a surprise move the Philadelphia Eagles parted ways with linebacker Mychal Kendricks. Kendricks is exactly the type of player that the Houston Texans could use on their defense. Kendricks can add veteran leadership and versatility to what can be a dominant defensive unit.
The hypothetical addition of Kendricks to the Texans defense is an intriguing one. As an inside linebacker Kendricks would split time with Benardrick McKinney and Zach Cunningham. This would allow Houston to give their young linebackers meaningful playtime and not experience a drop in play when they need to be subbed out. Cunningham and McKinney managed 82 and 95 total tackles respectively in 2017. Additionally McKinney took down the quarterback three times while Cunningham managed 1.5 sacks of his own.
What about defensive scheme?
While Kendricks would have to adjust to a new defensive scheme (Philadelphia ran a 4-3), he would be splitting time with others on the roster. Also with another productive linebacker in the mix, Houston would be able to be more creative defensively and weather the storm if another injury takes down J.J. Watt, a scenario that nobody wants to see happen. Some minor shifts to the defense could allow the Texans to at least have a presence on the defense if Watt were to become injured again. Shifting Whitney Mercilus or Jadeveon Clowney to defensive end while utilizing a more traditional 4-3 look could allow the Texans to still have a good defensive unit without Watt.
Mychal Kendricks’ history and potential impact
Well for starters he is formerly of the Super Bowl Champion Philadelphia Eagles. Kendricks spent six seasons in Philadelphia and was a productive player for the Eagles. Kendricks combined to make 454 tackles in 85 games as an Eagle. Also Kendricks managed to sack the quarterback 14 times, including a career high four sacks in both 2013 and 2014.
Simply put Kendricks has produced in the past and experienced the highest level of success. For a team like the Texans who are in between transition and contending they need to find players like Kendricks to add to their team. These type of singings can have a significant impact on the team as a whole. Often times they make the difference between playoff hopeful and serious contender.