5 players not named Jakobi Meyers the Texans should sign in Free Agency

Houston Texans HC Demeco Ryans, GM Nick Caserio (right) at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports
Houston Texans HC Demeco Ryans, GM Nick Caserio (right) at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Houston Texans hired their fourth head coach in as many seasons earlier this year. This time though, it feels different. They brought in DeMeco Ryans to replace Lovie Smith, who was given his walking papers after finishing 3-13-1 in 2022.

Ryans won’t be under pressure to win right off the bat but general manager Nick Caserio will need to get him some players if they want to make progress in 2023. Fortunately for the Texans, they have 11 selections, including two in the first round, in the 2023 NFL Draft.

Moreover, they have $38.423 million in cap space available to spend this offseason. They could free up an additional $16.71 million (and possibly a second or third-round draft pick) if they trade left tackle Laremy Tunsil for a total of $55.13 million. That would be more than enough money to replenish a roster that is devoided of talent.

One player Houston should stay away from in free agency is wide receiver Jakobi Meyers. The North Carolina State product hauled in 150 receptions for 1,670 years with eight touchdowns in the last two years. These are solid numbers but not the kind that warrants a contract that would pay him an annual salary of $15 million and maybe more. Instead, the Texans should use their surplus of cap space to fill some of the roster holes they have and target other free agents.

Instead of paying a premium for Meyer or any of the top receivers scheduled to hit the open market, they should target these five free agents.

Houston Texans
Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. (11) at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

5. The Houston Texans should sign WR Marvin Jones in free agency

The Jacksonville Jaguars went from last to first in the AFC South and made the playoffs for the first time since 2017 last season. One of the main reasons for their turnaround was the addition of wide receivers Christian Kirk and Zay Jones, both of whom went on to post career numbers.

The downside of signing Kirk and Jones was that Marvin Jones Jr. went from being the top target on the Jags’ offense in 2021 to the third receiving option last year. But even in a decreased role, the former Cal Golden Bear managed to finish the 2022 campaign with 46 receptions for 529 yards and three touchdowns.

Jones will be 33 by the time the 2023 season starts but he can still be a dependable No. 2 receiver for plenty of teams. As recently as 2021, he tallied 73 receptions for 832 yards with four touchdowns for a Jaguars team that ranked 32nd in points scored. There’s no doubt he could rack up over 800 receiving yards in a featured role and decent quarterback play.

On top of that, it wouldn’t be expensive to sign him. Back in 2021, he inked a two-year deal worth $13.5 million with the Jags and he could sign a contract in that range this offseason.

Brandin Cooks has made it clear that he “won’t accept any more trades” after being dealt three times throughout his career. If Cooks remains in Houston, he could form a solid receiving tandem with Jones.