Houston Texans: Trading veteran receivers makes no sense ahead of draft

Kenny Stills, Houston Texans (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Kenny Stills, Houston Texans (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) /

The Houston Texans should not pursue a trade for their veteran wide receivers on the roster.

An interesting tweet was sent out from NFL insider Dov Kleinman that presents the idea that the Houston Texans could take the route of trading Kenny Stills and Keke Coutee ahead of the 2020 NFL Draft. However, it makes very little sense for the Texans to trade either player with the ongoing issues teams across the league face with the pandemic.

Not only would both players present a certain value to the organization with knowledge of the offense over any rookie Bill O’Brien could draft, but he generally prefers veterans over inexperienced players. There exists the possibility the Texans could face themselves with a shorter timeline to get all the rookies up to speed than in other seasons due to the issues the league faces with maintaining players safe during these times.

O’Brien highlighted in yesterday’s video conference that they will be relying more on their veterans this upcoming season. “This is a veteran type of year, I think it’s going to really difficult for rookies without offseason programs to practice on the field and do the things that you do during that five-week stretch after the draft.”

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It’s important to note that Houston still has two years on Coutee’s rookie deal to evaluate if he can improve after two up and down seasons in the league, and the trade value isn’t there to net a  significant return. Meanwhile, Stills is in the last year of his contract and is slated to earn $7 million that is non-guaranteed for this season.

So from a big picture, it really does not push the needle for O’Brien to kick any veteran player out the door unless there exists a reason outside of football.

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Texans have a solid group of receivers moving forward for this season and trading either player would be a presented risk with the compensation being decent at best.