Sean Pendergast

Setting Expectations For Each Houston Texans Offseason Veteran Acquisition

Mathieu met with the Houston media on Monday afternoon.
Mathieu met with the Houston media on Monday afternoon. Screen grab from
The relationship between a city and its head football coach is a pretty simple one, based on one thing — winning. Qualifying and correlating like and dislike for a head coach generally comes down to how often the head coach emerges victorious on Sunday.

The relationship between a city and its football general manager, however, is a little more complex. Yes, winning is important for the GM — hell, it's important, to some degree, for each individual — but a city's impression of a GM is more nuanced. It's more about a general trust with the general manager than a hard and fast quantitative result. In short, judging coaches is objective, judging GMs is more subjective.

For Houston Texans' GM Brian Gaine, his first foray into the trust waters with the Texans' fan base came with his first free agency class back in March. Most fans and media members were expecting a semi-drunken spending spree, with Gaine using up the oodles of cap space left behind by his predecessor Rick Smith and coming away with, among other things, a starting left tackle.

Well, that didn't happen. Instead, Gaine (and by proxy, Bill O'Brien) were much more cautious and measured in their approach, choosing to invest in some value plays and distressed football assets instead. Oh, and Tyrann Mathieu... signing Tyrann Mathieu to a one year, $7 million was awesome.

Gaine did address the offensive line, to a degree, signing two interior linemen (Zach Fulton, Senio Kelemete) and a "penny stock" right tackle (Seantrel Henderson). The other big signing was cornerback Aaron Colvin, who should be this team's best cornerback this season, barring a rejuvenation of fourth year CB Kevin Johnson, who's coming off the worst season of his career.

There are a bunch of new names on the roster, what with it being at 90 guys and all, but the ten names below are the most significant ones that Gaine brought in via free agency or off the waiver wire. As we've done for the rookie draft choices, and the second and third year Texans, let's go through the ceilings and floors for each of these guys....

JOHNSON BADEMOSI, CB, 7th season, Stanford
 Special teams ace, occasional (hopefully productive) reps at cornerback
WORST CASE: He's not nearly as good on special teams as we hope

SAMMIE COATES, WR, 4th season, Auburn
BEST CASE: 4th wide receiver
WORST CASE: Released

AARON COLVIN, CB, 5th season, Oklahoma
BEST CASE: Regular starting cornerback for all 16 games
WORST CASE: Struggles as third cornerback

ZACH FULTON, C/G, 5th season, Tennessee
BEST CASE: Starting on the interior somewhere for 16 games
WORST CASE: Swing interior lineman

SEANTREL HENDERSON, T, 5th season, Miami (Fla.)
BEST CASE: Starting right tackle for 16 games
WORST CASE: Backup swing tackle

SENIO KELEMETE, G, 6th season, Washington
BEST CASE: Starting on the interior somewhere for 16 games
WORST CASE: Swing interior lineman

JOSH KEYES, ILB, 4th season, Boston College
BEST CASE: Makes the team, special teams, occasional inactive ILB
WORST CASE: Released

TYRANN MATHIEU, S, 6th season, LSU
BEST CASE: 2015 Tyrann Mathieu
WORST CASE: 2017 Tyrann Mathieu

STEPHEN MORRIS, QB, 1st season. Miami (Fla.)
BEST CASE: Third string QB
WORST CASE: Released

JOE WEBB, QB, 9th season, Alabama-Birmingham
BEST CASE: Jack of all trades WR, special teamer, third QB
WORST CASE: Released

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Sean Pendergast is a contributing freelance writer who covers Houston area sports daily in the News section, with periodic columns and features, as well. He also hosts afternoon drive on SportsRadio 610, as well as the post game show for the Houston Texans.
Contact: Sean Pendergast