C.J. Fiedorowicz

O’Brien Expects Fiedorowicz Back in 2018

Texans head coach Bill O’Brien told reporters that he expects tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz to return to the team in 2018, writes Aaron Wilson of the Houston ChronicleC.J. Fiedorowicz

According to league sources, however, the Texans are concerned about the veteran’s short- and long-term health after suffering three concussions in 2017. “Again, I expect it that way,” O’Brien said. “We think very highly of C.J. He just signed a contract extension here. We think he’s a really good tight end for us. So, we’d love to see him back.”

On Sunday, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Fiedorowicz could contemplate retirement, but Wilson writes that the player’s agent told the Chronicle that he still wants to play and will take time before making a decision. Like O’Brien said, the tight end signed a three-year $21.5 MM contract in the offseason and would have a home in Houston should he wish to continue his career.

After suffering three concussions, which resulted in two IR stints in 2017, Fiedorowicz is sure to strongly consider his future plans before making a decision.

Following a breakout season in 2016 in which he caught 54 passes, Fiedorowicz has been limited to just 14 grabs in 2017.

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C.J. Fiedorowicz Could Retire

Texans TE C.J. Fiedorowicz suffered his third concussion of the season last week, which was at least the fourth time he has been concussed in the past two years. Houston placed the 26-year-old on IR earlier this week, thereby ending his season, but Adam Schefter of ESPN.com reports that Fiedorowicz’s unfortunate concussion history could force him to retire.

C.J. Fiedorowicz (vertical)

In order to continue playing, he would need to pass a team physical, and Schefter says there are no assurances that he could do so at this point. Houston selected Fiedorowicz, an Iowa product, in the third-round of the 2014 draft, and after the former Hawkeye broke out in 2016 with 54 catches for 554 yards and four touchdowns, the Texans rewarded him with a three-year, $21.5MM extension last offseason (including $10MM guaranteed).

However, as Schefter observes, Fiedorowicz’s deal did include a de-escalator that would bring down his base salary by $2.8MM if he were to be cut as a result of a pre-existing condition such as a concussion, so the team was clearly concerned about the tight end’s history.

Fiedorowicz was placed on IR in early September due to a concussion, and he returned to the Texans’ active roster in Week 10 before succumbing to his latest head injury last week. He finished what could be his final season with 14 catches for 127 yards.

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Texans Place Fiedorowicz, Ellington On IR

The Texans have placed tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz (concussion) and wide receiver Bruce Ellington (hamstring) on injured reserve. Both players will be sidelined for the last four games of the regular season. 

Fiedorowicz left Sunday’s game when he suffered his third concussion of the year. Thanks to head injuries, he appeared in only five games in 2017. He finishes out with 14 catches for 127 yards – not quite the encore he was hoping for after reeling in 54 catches for 449 yards and four touchdowns, all career highs. He’s scheduled to be back with the team in 2018 after signing a the three-year, $21.5MM extension in the offseason.

Ellington missed all of last season with the same injury. The former fourth-round pick is scheduled to reach free agency in March.

The 4-8 Texans will round out the season with games against the 49ers, Jaguars, Steelers, and Colts. The Texans’ 2018 first round pick – which would be in the top ten if the season ended today – is owned by the Browns.

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C.J. Fiedorowicz Suffers Third Concussion Of Season

C.J. Fiedorowicz won’t return to today’s Texans-Titans game. He sustained a concussion, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports (on Twitter).

This is the veteran tight end’s third this season. Fiedororwicz left the game in the first half. He suited up for his fifth game of the season on Sunday and fourth since coming off the Texans’ IR. But considering the frequency of these injuries, it would not be surprising to see the 26-year-old pass-catcher shelved for the remainder of the season.

Fiedorowicz went on IR for a concussion sustained in Week 1, but he also suffered a head injury during the preseason. Despite missing two months of action, the fourth-year tight end’s troubles avoiding these damaging blows have persisted.

The Texans signed Fiedorowicz to a three-year, $21.5MM extension this offseason — with $10MM guaranteed.

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Texans Activate C.J. Fiedorowicz, Place Ryan Griffin On IR

The Texans swapped out tight ends on their 53-man roster on Friday, activating C.J. Fiedorowicz from IR and moving Ryan Griffin to the injured list, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com reports (on Twitter).

Fiedorowicz suffered a concussion to induce an IR stay in Week 1 but will return Sunday, and James Palmer of NFL.com tweets the Texans expect him to play a key role.

Griffin was in concussion protocol this week, being ruled out for Sunday’s Rams game, and the head injury will likely end his season. Re-signed this offseason, Griffin caught 13 passes for 158 yards this season. He played in seven of the Texans’ eight games. Griffin sustained two concussions this season, one that’s been incredibly problematic for Texans tight ends.

Fiedorowicz also suffered two concussions this season, one coming during preseason play. So his return bears monitoring.

Griffin’s shutdown will leave Fiedorowicz and Stephen Anderson as the only tight ends on the active roster. Fiedorowicz finished with 559 receiving yards and tied for the team high with four touchdowns last season.

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Texans Cut Matt McGloin, Add Josh Johnson

The Texans announced that they have waived quarterback Matt McGloin. To take his place, they have replaced him with fellow QB Josh Johnson. In a related move, the Texans have also released defensive lineman Kendall LangfordJosh Johnson (vertical)

McGloin was signed shortly after starting quarterback Deshaun Watson went down with an ACL tear. However, it was T.J. Yates – signed the day after McGloin – who dressed as Tom Savage‘s backup over the weekend.

All indications are that Savage will continue as the Texans’ starter, even after Houston’s 20-14 defeat at the hands of the Colts. Johnson may or may not get the nod over Yates as the primary backup.

Johnson has not played in a regular season NFL game since 2013. Since then, he has signed 13 contracts with eight different teams, as Tom Pelissero of NFL.com (on Twitter) notes.

The Texans are also expected to activate tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz from injured reserve this week, so the release of Langford could make room for him on the 53-man roster.

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Texans TE C.J. Fiedorowicz To Return From IR

Tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz returned to practice today, and the Texans have officially designated him to return from injured reserve, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.C.J. Fiedorowicz

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Houston infamously lost all three of its tight ends — Fiedorowicz, Ryan Griffin, and Stephen Anderson — to concussions in Week 1, but Fiedorowicz’s was the most severe. Given that he had also suffered a concussion during the preseason, Fiedorowicz was placed on IR, as the Texans opted not to further risk his health.

The Texans never did replace Fiedorowicz with another tight end, so Griffin and Anderson have handled the position for the Houston’s 12th-ranked-DVOA offense. Griffin is third on the club with 12 receptions, and has also graded as an above-average run-blocker (No. 24 among 69 qualifiers, per Pro Football Focus). Anderson, a second-year pro, has managed nine catches for 136 yards.

Fiedorowicz, 26, was a major part of the Texans’ offense in 2016, as his 89 targets represented 15% of Houston’s target share. All told, he posted 54 receptions for 559 yards and four touchdowns, easily the best marks of his NFL career. The Texans rewarded Fiedorowicz with a contract extension just before the start of the season, inking him to a three-year, $23.5MM extension that locks him up through the 2021 campaign.

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Texans Place C.J. Fiedorowicz On IR

Less than two weeks after signing an extension, C.J. Fiedorowicz won’t be available for the Texans for a while. The team placed its starting tight end on IR after he sustained a concussion, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets.

Fiedorowicz missed time with a concussion last season as well, and this latest head injury will shelve him for at least half of Houston’s season. The Texans re-signed Ryan Griffin this offseason but are thin behind him, with only second-year UDFA Stephen Anderson on the roster.

The Texans activated wide receiver Jaelen Strong, who served a one-game suspension.

Fiedorowicz played in Week 1 but left with the concussion. With the Texans playing on Thursday, he was not going to be cleared in time for Week 2. He will now be out for much longer. Griffin also is in concussion protocol, making it likely Houston looks for tight ends soon. Brian Cushing and Bruce Ellington are also in the protocol, and Bill O’Brien didn’t sound optimistic Tuesday when assessing their chances for Thursday night.

The fourth-year tight end broke out last season, more than doubling his previous career receiving yardage total by catching 54 passes for 559 yards.

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Texans Sign C.J. Fiedorowicz To Extension

The Texans have agreed to a three-year contract extension with tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN (on Twitter). The deal, which runs through 2020, is worth $22MM and includes $10.1MM in guarantees, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. Fiedorowicz now ranks 14th among tight ends in total contract value, ninth in yearly average and 17th in guarantees.

C.J. Fiedorowicz

This has been an extension-happy day for the Texans, who locked up safety Andre Hal and fullback Jay Prosch to long-term pacts in the afternoon. Fiedorowicz is arguably the highest-profile player of the trio, having broken out as a third-year man in 2016 with 54 receptions, 554 yards and four touchdowns on 89 targets. The 25-year-old also started in all 15 of his appearances, building on a 14-start campaign in 2015. In all, the former Iowa Hawkeye has logged 37 starts in 46 games and hauled in 75 catches, 754 yards and six scores since going to the Texans in the third round of the 2014 draft.

Between Fiedorowicz and Ryan Griffin, who amassed 50 receptions last season, the Texans possess one of the most prolific pass-catching tight end tandems in the league. Griffin is under contract through 2019 on the three-year, $9MM extension he signed in March, meaning the club will have the duo around for the foreseeable future.

Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle first reported that the two sides were nearing a deal. Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

2017 Proven Performance Escalators

According to the NFL’s contractual bargaining agreement, players drafted in rounds three though seven are entitled to raises during the fourth year of their respective rookie contracts. The pay bumps are tied to playing time — a player must have played in 35% of his team’s offensive or defensive snaps in two of his first three seasons, or averaged 35% playing time cumulatively during that period.Donte Moncrief (Vertical)

If one of these thresholds is met, the player’s salary is elevated to the level of that year’s lowest restricted free agent tender — that figure should be around $1.8MM in 2017. Players selected in the first or second round, undrafted free agents, and kickers/punters are ineligible for the proven performance escalator.

Here are the players who will see their salary rise in 2017 courtesy of the proven performance escalator:

49ers: Aaron Lynch, LB; Marcus Martin, OL

Bears: Charles Leno, T; Will Sutton, DT

Bengals: Russell Bodine, C

Bills: Preston Brown, LB; Seantrel Henderson, T

Broncos: Michael Schofield, OL

Browns: Christian Kirksey, LB

Buccaneers: Kevin Pamphile, G

Cardinals: John Brown, WR

Chiefs: Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, G; Zach Fulton, G; Phillip Gaines, CB

Colts: Donte Moncrief, WR

Cowboys: Anthony Hitchens, LB

Falcons: Devonta Freeman, RB

Giants: Devon Kennard, LB

Jaguars: Aaron Colvin, CB; Brandon Linder, G; Telvin Smith, LB

Lions: Nevin Lawson, CB; Travis Swanson, C

Packers: Corey Linsley, C; Richard Rodgers, TE

Panthers: Tre Boston, S; Trai Turner, G

Raiders: T.J. Carrie, CB; Justin Ellis, DT; Gabe Jackson, G

Rams: Maurice Alexander, S; E.J. Gaines, CB

Redskins: Bashaud Breeland, CB; Spencer Long, G; Morgan Moses, T

Texans: C.J. Fiedorowicz, TE; Andre Hal, S

Titans: DaQuan Jones, DL; Avery Williamson, LB

Vikings: Shamar Stephen, DT

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