Why Texans trading Maliek Collins to 49ers was the wrong decision

The Houston Texans traded starting DT Maliek Collins to the San Francisco 49ers

AFC Wild Card Playoffs - Cleveland Browns v Houston Texans
AFC Wild Card Playoffs - Cleveland Browns v Houston Texans / Carmen Mandato/GettyImages
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On Wednesday the Houston Texans traded starting DT Maliek Collins to the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for a seventh-round pick, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports. Collins started all 16 games he played last season, finishing the year with five sacks (tied for career high), 41 tackles, and eight TFLs. Houston once again has a void at the DT position, which they had filled after signing Denico Autry this week. Now, they must address their DL again, and they're running out of free agents to fill that void.

Collins just signed a contract extension last year for two years and $23M, and it seemed as if he would at least play out the extension before leaving Houston. In three years with Houston, Collins totaled 11 sacks, 107 tackles, and 26 TFLs, along with 35 QB hits. Trading away Collins, the Texans lose a key piece to their DL that was a huge factor in their success last year. Serving as the fourth pass-rushing option, Collins was able to find the QB with ease as Will Anderson and Jonathan Greenard got all the attention.

Houston signed Foley Fatukasi this week, but he and Autry won't be able to get the job done this year, as Houston became accustomed to seeing last year with Collins and Sheldon Rankins. After the trade, Spotrac has the Texans at $20M in top 51 cap space, a $2M increase from $18M the site projected, increasing enough to bring in another interior lineman. In addition to their added cap savings, they have a presumed six draft picks in the upcoming draft after the last two trades.

Houston could still make another trade if they find a trade partner they like more than a free agent, but for now, they have five DTs rostered. Two of whom have starting experience, Denico Autry and Foley Fatukasi. Foley can't replace the production that they got from Collins, which leads to the question. Who's the next addition Nick Caserio will make to the DL?

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