Texans To Sign RB Devin Singletary

Just as one notable addition has been reported on the Texans’ offense, another has emerged. Houston has agreed to a deal with running back Devin Singletary, as first reported by Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. ESPN’s Adam Schefter notes that the one-year pact has a maximum value of $3.75MM (Twitter links).

The deal includes a base value of $2.75MM, Aaron Wilson of KPRC2 tweets. Of this figure, $2.5MM will be guaranteed. There are $375K worth of incentives in the former Bills back’s deal.

Singletary, 25, essentially spent all of his four-year Bills career as the team’s lead back, though that tile led to a lower usage rate than it would have on most other teams. Now, he will head to Houston in what will be a timeshare in the backfield along with impressive 2022 fourth-rounder Dameon Pierce, who staked his claim to the top of the depth chart with a productive rookie campaign.

[RELATED: Texans To Add TE Dalton Schultz]

This free agency period, as expected, has not treated running backs especially well. As the top back available, even Miles Sanders did not hit the $7MM-per-year threshold. None of the non-Sanders contingent has surpassed $6MM per annum, but most of the starter-level backs who hit the market have now found homes. Singletary will attempt to carve out a steady role alongside Pierce in Houston.

The Bills used a second-round pick on James Cook last year and traded for Nyheim Hines, and Brandon Beane said the team plans to add another running back. The team showed interest in Jamaal Williams, but last season’s rushing touchdowns leader landed with the Saints. Buffalo may turn back to the draft to find a Cook complementary runner. Singletary’s four-year Buffalo tenure will end with 56 starts; his Houston run looks set to involve a rotational role.

Part of this year’s supply-and-demand crunch, the likely Pierce change-of-pace option is coming off a productive Buffalo stay. Singletary held off the likes of Cook and Zack Moss to remain the primary back during the Bills’ AFC East three-peat. He averaged 4.6 yards per carry and cleared 800 in total in each of the past two seasons, adding three playoff touchdowns in 2021. Josh Allen still operated as the Bills’ primary goal-line option — much to the chagrin of Singletary or Moss fantasy GMs — but the team’s 5-foot-7 back still totaled 12 touchdowns over the past two seasons. The former Florida Atlantic star is just 5-foot-7 and has yet to clear 200 receiving yards in a season, but ahead of his age-26 campaign, he should still have some tread on his tires.

Although Singletary logged a whopping 301 carries during his dominant sophomore season at the Conference USA school (1,918 rushing yards in 2017), he has never topped 190 in a season as a pro. Barring an injury to Pierce, his Texans workload will likely be light as well. Singletary will join Dare Ogunbowale and Gerrid Doaks as non-Pierce options on Houston’s roster. The team has brought in several veteran backs during GM Nick Caserio‘s tenure — Rex Burkhead, Phillip Lindsay, Mark Ingram and Marlon Mack among them — and Singletary will be the latest. But Pierce, a 2022 fourth-rounder, will almost definitely begin a second season as the team’s ball-carrying centerpiece.

Sam Robinson contributed to this post.

View Comments (7)