While negotiations with Odell Beckham Jr., Aaron Donald and Khalil Mack are overshadowing the Texans’ talks with Jadeveon Clowney, the talks in Houston could get interesting fairly soon. Because as of Monday night, the Texans and Clowney have not engaged in any substantive extension discussions this offseason, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reports.
These proceedings differ from the Texans’ approaches with past offseason extension recipients Matt Schaub, Eric Winston or DeAndre Hopkins, per McClain, with dialogue ramping up prior to those deals being finalized. Clowney, though, is again dealing with an injury that could be causing the Texans to pause these seminal negotiations. Though, McClain notes Clowney assured Bill O’Brien he’d be ready by the time the Texans open camp July 26.
Although Clowney’s shaken off his rookie-year injury and been largely available since, he’s been more prone to physical ailments than Donald or Mack. With the Texans seeing J.J. Watt‘s prime being threatened by severe setbacks, the franchise may want to see Clowney provide further proof the injuries are in his past.
To be fair, Clowney has only missed two games in the past two seasons combined and five in the past three. The 25-year-old standout missed 12 as a rookie, though, with a knee injury and needed arthroscopic knee surgery this offseason. He finished with a career-high 9.5 sacks last season and spearheaded a Houston defense that saw both Watt and Whitney Mercilus go down early in the season. Clowney holding out could leave the Texans vulnerable considering Watt’s recent history and Mercilus also missing extensive time in 2017.
Clowney reported for Houston’s offseason activities but did not participate due to the offseason knee procedure. He’s said he wants to stay in Houston long-term, and new Texans GM Brian Gaine — who just authorized a five-year, $50MM re-up for Benardrick McKinney — expressed optimism about a deal being done before the regular season.
This franchise has a history of completing major extensions in the offseason, as the deals for Watt, Hopkins and now McKinney show, and Gaine is following Rick Smith‘s policy of no in-season negotiations. But McClain does not expect a Clowney deal to come to fruition before the season begins.
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