Congratulations to Mario Williams, former Houston Texans, for signing the largest contract ever to an NFL defensive player. Now let’s move on.
by Brandon Williams, CBSSports.com
In an interview with Fox 26 in Houston, Coach Gary Kubiak said that while he was happy for DE/OLB Mario Williams signing with the Bills, he will be missed. “From the loss standpoint, it’s just so difficult,” said Kubiak. “I understand the game…(but) we’ve got to move on from that standpoint, but I’m also so proud of him and happy for him and his family. I’m very happy for the young man who has been a class act.”
From the first day of free agency, Mario Williams has been the talk of the town. It reminded of the song from The Clash, “Should I stay or should I go?” Owner Bob McNair and General Manager Rick Smith verbalized their desire to see Williams in a Texans uniform next year. Williams himself stated being the highest paid defensive player in the league was not a priority. So what happened? Money talks…
Even with Mario Williams headed to Buffalo and the Houston Texans losing out on their controversial #1 draft pick of 6 years ago, the Buffalo Bills will end up this transactions biggest loser. http://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/redskins/buffalo-bills-give-mario-williams-largest-contract-for-defensive-player/2012/03/15/gIQAjPXFFS_story.html. Had the Texans been willing or even able to muster this type of money, they most certainly would not be able to re-sign Pro Bowl Center Chris Myers or any of the other pending free agents. I am sure the Texans have put an offer of some sorts to Myers and right guard Mike Brisiel. These men are not ignorant and most assuredly understand the importance of keeping their offensive line in tact for 2 time Pro Bowl RB Arian Foster.
Furthermore, let’s consider the accomplishments of the Houston Texans defense without Mario Williams. To see a glimpse of the future, we need only to look to the recent past. In Williams’ absence, many players stepped up and had solid seasons. Connor Barwin had 43 tackles and 10.5 sacks, Rookie Brooks Reed had 6.5 sacks, both players in the outside linebacker position. J.J. Watt drew consideration for Defensive Rookie of the Year honors. Demeco Ryans(normally gathering a 100 tackles a season) and Brian Cushing (who had 98 tackles this season) are a strong force at inside linebacker. Picking up Johnathan Joseph and Danieal Manning last summer made a tremendous improvement to a dismal secondary. These players and others, without Mario Williams, combined for a defense that finished the season 2nd overall, 3rd against the pass and 4th against the run.
So I say to all Houston Texan fans, let’s move on. If the management will make the commitment to keep the offensive line in tact and Arian Foster and Matt Schaub stay healthy, there is certainly no reason why the Texans can’t improve on this past season’s accomplishments. Let the Buffalo Bills be the big player in the Mario Williams game, I will stick with what we have in Houston.