The Texans are making a strong run at left tackle Nate Solder, according to John McClain of the Houston Chronicle (on Twitter). The Texans started five different left tackles in 2017, so they are anxious to plug the hole with a capable player like Solder.
If the Texans are intent on landing Solder, they’ll have to pony up some serious bucks. The veteran ranks fifth on our list of this year’s Top 50 NFL Free Agents.
Solder didn’t have his best season in 2017, but much of that can be attributed to injuries. The incumbent Patriots would like to re-sign him, but the belief is that he’ll garner offers of $12MM/year, which could be too rich for New England’s blood.
The Texans created an opening at left tackle after trading four-time Pro Bowler Duane Brown to the Seahawks last season. That need is compounded by the fact that Chris Clark, who played in 10 games at left tackle last year, starting eight, is set to become an unrestricted free agent. Left guard Xavier Su’a-Filo is also due to become a free agent.
Solder, 29, has consistently rated as an above-average tackle since the Patriots selected him 17th overall in 2011. Pro Football Focus graded him as the No. 32 tackle last season and he was in the top 20 the year prior. Solder has appeared in at least 15 games in six of his first seven seasons in the league and would certainly provide protection to the blindside of Deshaun Watson, who’ll be coming off his ACL injury.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.