The Houston Texans have signed free agent linebacker Joe Mays to a contract, according to Houston Chronicle reporter John McClain. The move comes only six days after the Denver Broncos released Mays, and provides helpful depth for the Texans at a young position.
Mays is an experienced NFL veteran of five seasons who has 22 career starts with the Broncos and Philadelphia Eagles. Last season, Mays played in only six games for the Broncos after an ankle injury sidelined him in October. He had 12 total tackles and a half sack and lost his starting slot after winning it in the preseason. The Texans are likely to use Mays on special teams as well.
Battle Red Blog describes the signing as a "good, cautious move" that fills a need without going over the top on the open market:
Mays isn't expected to compete for a starting position, but he's more meant to be insurance in case Darryl Sharpton
gets hurt (again). Apparently, the Texans learned from seeing Shane Vereen
and Prisoner 81 slice up their inside linebackers last year. The Texans went out and bolstered their depth without signing some over-the-hill veteran. All in all, it's a good, cautious move.
Tim Dobbins, Mike Mohamed and Evan Frierson are also players who will be competing for time behind Brian Cushing and Darryl Sharpton in the middle of the defense.
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