The Houston Texans hit the jackpot during the 2018 NFL offseason when they signed Tyrann Mathieu to a one-year deal. Now they need to do it all over again.
When something works well, it needs to continue, and for the Houston Texans, that means they need to bring back and re-sign safety Tyrann Mathieu to a deal this offseason. The Texans had strong play from Mathieu in his season with the Texans, as he was a big part of a successful defense that got back on track this past season.
Mathieu finished his season with the Texans by playing all 16 games, totaling 89 tackles, three sacks and two interceptions. He also had eight passes defensed during the regular season. In the playoff loss to the Indianapolis Colts, Mathieu had eight tackles.
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The sacks by Mathieu came in games against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Miami Dolphins and the Washington Redskins. The two interceptions came against the New England Patriots in Week 1 and the Jaguars in Week 7.
Even with those strong stats, what Mathieu brought to the Texans was more important than his stats. Mathieu brought strong leadership and experience to the secondary of the Texans, and though it does need added improvement this offseason, the Texans can’t afford to lose what Mathieu brought to them this past season.
According to Spotrac.com, Mathieu signed a $2 million base salary this past season with a $4.5 million signing bonus with a roster bonus of $500,000. That number will most likely be higher this time around, as all NFL teams know Mathieu still brings a lot to the table in terms of helping a defense in the NFL.
As a safety for the Texans, Mathieu graded in at 75.1 overall by Pro Football Focus, including a run-defense grade of 83.9. Rookie safety Justin Reid benefited from having Mathieu — who played in 1,114 snaps — on his side, as Reid had a Pro Football Focus grade of 77 overall, with a 77.6 coverage grade.
Deepi Sidhu of HoustonTexans.com quoted Mathieu earlier this month about staying with the Texans:
“Obviously, I’m going to take some time, really reflect but like I said, I really want to be here,” Mathieu said.
Other than re-signing Jadeveon Clowney this offseason, keeping Mathieu is just as important. Mathieu will probably cost more this contract as he knows, and now everyone knows, the value he brings to the Texans franchise, but he’s well worth the investment, too.
The Texans have something special with a defense that consists of Mathieu, J.J. Watt and Clowney in 2018, and it showed with the unit being a big reason they won the AFC South title and at one point won nine straight games.
Add that to what the Texans are set to face next season in what has to be one of the toughest schedules of any team next season, and it is a must for the front office of the Texans to work out a deal with Mathieu this offseason.
If the Texans don’t bring him back for his seventh NFL season (the first six were with the Arizona Cardinals), the defense won’t play up to the standards it did for a majority of this past season, and it would be a shame to let him play elsewhere in 2019.
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