HOUSTON (CBS Houston) — The Texans lost a couple key pieces along its offensive line this week with the start of NFL free agency, but they have managed to hold on to the most critical part of the offensive line.
The team announced Saturday that it has re-signed pro bowl center Chris Myers to a four-year contract for a reported $25 million with $14 million in guaranteed money. His signing comes on the heels of veteran right guard Mike Brisiel signing a deal Friday with the Oakland Raiders. Earlier in the week the Texans released right tackle Eric Winston in a purge to get under the salary cap before free agency began.
Much of the offensive line upheaval was lost in the Mario Williams saga that saw the former Texan sign the richest defensive contract in NFL history on Thursday.
“Let me first say thank you to all of the dedicated Texans fans out there,” Myers wrote on his Twitter page. “I am extremely happy to stay here in Houston and be a Texan!”
But at least they salvaged the anchor of the offensive line by keeping Myers just two days after he visited the Tennessee Titans. The eight-year veteran has started 64 regular season game and two playoff games for the Texans and earned the franchise’s first Pro Bowl selection after last season.
But the Texans still have some making up to if they want to return to the form that allowed the offense to finish last season as the second-best rushing offense in the NFL (2,448 rushing yards and 153.0 per game average). Running backs Arian Foster and Ben Tate could be hard pressed to duplicate similar numbers without two of the five offensive linemen missing and also with the release of fullback Lawrence Vickers this week.