It looks like Mike Evans may enter free agency after all

The Houston Texans faithful may get their prized receiver after all.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Houston Texans
Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Houston Texans / Bob Levey/GettyImages

The Houston Texans may get a chance to land Mike Evans after all, as the star wide receiver did not reach a new deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers when it would've made the most sense for them to do so. The Buccanneers had a deadline they needed to meet on a new deal to avoid paying extra for Evans.

Due to not getting a deal done by Feb. 19, 2024, the Buccaneers are now being imposed with a $7.4 million dead-cap hit, which will affect how much money they have this offseason to spend. They have roughly $32 million in salary cap space this offseason and are stuck in limbo. It's likely if they don't re-sign Evans, they won't re-sign their Pro Bowl quarterback Baker Mayfield and if that happens, the team may go into a soft rebuild.

With so much money up in the air between Evans and Mayfield, it makes sense that the team would consider letting both men go for a shot at a less restrictive roster, financially speaking. If they were serious about retaining Evans and keeping this core together, you'd think that the Buccaneers would do everything possible to not eat that dead-cap figure.

It's a strong sign that the Buccaneers may not be a serious contender in the Evans sweepstakes. If they're not, then the Texans have as good of a shot as anyone to sign the veteran receiver. Now, that doesn't mean that Evans is a great fit for the Texans, he is over 30 and has a decade in the league, so he's not exactly on everyone else's timeline, nor is he really a position of need for the team.

But name value is a big deal in football at the time and despite not being a need, and being older than you'd want, people still really want to see Evans land in Houston, and thanks to the Bucs, that seems far more likely than ever.