Texans Telegram: Will Malcolm Butler be joining Houston?

Tennessee Titans cornerback Malcolm Butler (21) Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
Tennessee Titans cornerback Malcolm Butler (21) Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports /
Malcolm Butler, Houston Texans
Tennessee Titans cornerback Malcolm Butler (21) vs. the Houston Texans Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports /

The Houston Texans need to add to a secondary and defense that left fans wanting for much more last season. With the news that Malcolm Butler has been released by the Tennessee Titans, does that mean the cornerback could be joining the Texans in the near future?

It isn’t out of the realm of possibility to even think about that because of the past ties with the New England Patriots for both Butler and current Houston Texans general manager Nick Caserio, plus Butler is coming off a season where he was better than most of the secondary of the Texans last season.

Butler played the past three seasons in Tennessee, and before that the cornerback played four seasons with the Patriots.

This past season Butler totaled 89 solo tackles, with four interceptions, tying a career-high for interceptions in a season. Butler had four interceptions in 2016 with New England, and for his career Butler has 17 interceptions. Since 2015 (his second season) Butler has had no less than two interceptions per season.

Last season the entire defense of the Houston Texans totaled only three interceptions, and they were by J.J. Watt, Bradley Roby, and Vernon Hargreaves III. Watt was a pass rusher for Houston, while Roby missed the final six games, and Hargreaves played in all 16 games in the secondary.

The inability for the defense to force teams to make mistakes against them in the air was not only because of the poor play in pass coverage, but because teams just ran the ball against the Texans, as Houston had one of the worst run defenses in all of the NFL.

Butler’s release by the Titans saved that franchise $10 million on their salary cap, but that also means Butler is now free to join any team that would like to see him in their uniform. That could be the Texans because they are 10th in the league in freed up salary cap space, so they have room to work if they see him as a free agent target.

Butler is entering his eighth season and he’s 31 years old, plus a past Super Bowl champion. Would he want to join a franchise like the Texans who are rebuilding parts of their team? If Deshaun Watson is traded, the Texans will be even further away from being in Super Bowl contention in the next few seasons.

In his last contract, Butler earned an average salary of $12.5 million per year, so it would be interesting to see if the Texans are interested what type of contract they would offer the cornerback. It is a possibility to say the least, so it will be interesting to keep an eye on Butler and if he joins the Texans defense for the 2021 season.

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Houston Texans Trivia: A daily question for Texans fans

• What is the number of most consecutive wins by Houston Texans, and what season did it happen?

Answer to previous question: Arian Foster on an 8-yard run against the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2011 AFC Wild Card Round. The Texans won the game by a 31-10 score.