The two teams announced on Thursday morning that they have agreed to a three-year contract extension worth a reported 5-year, 45-million dollar deal. That’s a lot of money, but we’ll break it down a little bit.First some context.
The Houston Texans have gotten really good at trading away future salary dollars now that the team is trying to develop players over the next few years. On Thursday, the team ended the years long pursuit of free agent cornerback A.J. Bouye by sending their 2013 first-round draft pick for the former Jacksonville cornerback. They then sent former first-round pick Jadeveon Clowney for quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s 2014 second-round draft selection in September, the exact same time that they traded Clowney to the Kansas City Chiefs for a second-round and second-year draft pick.
Two games into the 2014 season, the Houston Texans traded for second-year wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins. They made him a priority free agent and eventually signed him. He had a big debut with four catches, 54 receiving yards and two touchdowns this preseason. His first catch as a Jet turned into the game winner at the end of Sunday night’s 30-16 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals.
Now, the money paid to Hoyer is an addition to that list. While Hoyer is on the active roster for only seven games thanks to an Achilles’ tendon injury suffered in 2013, he is due to make a little over $5 million in 2014.
The final piece was an offer made to Manziel last February, only to be snubbed. Manziel’s $12.35 million 2014 base salary was then trimmed down to $7.8 million by the Browns last August, as he had no leverage at that point. Had Manziel accepted a deal that paid him more than half of what the Cowboys offered last February, he would be playing the most money of any 2014 starting quarterback. It never happened, however .
From a fan’s perspective, both the deal and the timing make some sense. Hoyer’s contract runs through the 2017 season and he’ll never have to worry about a second contract. The only way Hoyer lands in Houston – and that’s a pretty big if – is if the Texans are forced to cut him or the Dolphins swoop in and sign him. There have been whispers for a while that Miami might be after Manziel, and the trade makes perfect sense from a fan perspective. Houston may have to let Hoyer walk if he doesn’t contribute, and if the Dolphins make the deal after a long offseason, it’s an even better fit.
Also, it’s worth mentioning, this isn’t the first time the Texans have worked with an NFL team on a contract extension. The team worked out quarterback Brock Osweiler with the Denver Broncos for nearly two years and extended quarterback Matt Schaub to three years and $65 million. Osweiler became the number two in the Texans’ offense, and Schaub signed a long-term deal last spring that will keep him here through 2018. All three of these deals were for several million more than Hoyer’s $7 million in 2014, especially when you compare them with rookie quarterback Tom Savage’s new deal with the Houston Texans.
Still, the timing of this deal is interesting. It’s always interesting seeing how the NFL works when you’re involved. It’s especially fascinating when it’s the Dolphins, and you get to spend the weekend watching them execute. It’s the same with Hoyer, who will enter what could be a final year of his rookie deal with about $5 million cash attached. After that, he and the Dolphins will likely have to figure it out on the open market. Either way, Hoyer is going to be back.
We’ll have that on Saturday, when we’re trying to figure out what happens with Miami’s entire offensive line.