Houston Texans: The reason why Phillip Gaines is the chosen one

Houston Texans cornerback Phillip Gaines (Photo by: 2018 Nick Cammett/Diamond Images/Getty Images)
Houston Texans cornerback Phillip Gaines (Photo by: 2018 Nick Cammett/Diamond Images/Getty Images) /

The Houston Texans have signed cornerback Phillip Gaines to a one-year deal after cutting ties with Aaron Colvin. Why was he chosen? Let’s take a look.

Houston Texans fans — before we know it, we’ll be embarking on another week of action for our team and this time they’ll be taking on the Jacksonville Jaguars for their Week 2 matchup this Sunday.

The upcoming game will be the home opener for the Houston Texans and the expectations are high that they’ll come out victorious within the next couple of days.  But with as much parity as the NFL has these days, no win is guaranteed and they’ll have to earn every bit of it.

But I would have to say that 2019 has just a slight exception.  The Miami Dolphins are obviously were trying to tank and loading up on draft picks to rebuild their team through that said venue.  I can’t recall a professional football team being that damn bad and it certainly showed in their home debut against the Baltimore Ravens.  Lamar Jackson and Hollywood Martin made a fool out of that team to the likes of what I haven’t seen in quite some time.

Too bad the Houston Texans don’t face them this season or you could certainly put a “W” in the column for that match up.  They weren’t as lucky this season as the amount of stiff competition certainly outweighs what they faced last season.

However, if you think about it, the Houston Texans will be facing a rather inexperienced Gardner Minshew this week but he actually did perform considerably well in Nick Foles‘ stead.  The latter will be out some time while he nurses a serious shoulder injury to his non-throwing arm.  Although Philip Rivers comes the following the week, they’ll be facing a struggling Cam Newton the following the week and my bet is that he’ll still be in the funk by the time they face the Houston Texans in Week 4.

It’ll be interesting!

But anyway, the Houston Texans cut ties with Aaron Colvin earlier this week after having unbelievably bad showing against the New Orleans Saints that involved him giving up to two touchdowns and with him just looking lost the whole game in terms of his spatial awareness.  The Houston Texans did him a favor by releasing him — but not for themselves financially — the team is still on the hook of a cap charge of approximately $10.5M.

Colvin’s contact was front-loaded to the majority of his guaranteed money was within this season and if they had waited to cut him until next season, his dead cap amount would’ve been $2M in 2020 or 2021.

He was just signed to a four-year, $34 million deal — $18M guaranteed — this past offseason.

His contract will still be on the books for the next few seasons but Colvin will not be a member of this team.

His ouster has warranted a replacement and the Houston Texans quickly made a corresponding move to sign Phillip Gaines to a one-year minimum salary deal worth $805K.  Gaines, who was a third-round pick in the 2014 draft out of crosstown Rice U, is coming back to where his professional career started, at the collegiate level.

Since being drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs, Gaines has made stops in Buffalo and Cleveland before landing himself into the Bayou City.

So what does he bring to the table?

Firstly, he’s 6-foot-tall, 193 pounds and can run the 40-yard dash in 4.8 seconds.  Many corners can do that but what specifically does he do that could help make this team whole?

Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle writes that his versatility, which we all know is key to being a member of this team, is what has attracted the Houston Texans to him.  Bill O’Brien says that he can play inside and outside, he’s smart and has good movement skills.

As long as he can get physical and not play yards off the ball like last week, I’ll be happy with this signing.  After Colvin’s performance, there’s nowhere to go but up and I think we may be a bit surprised possibly at how he performs for this team.

He’s a Texas-made corner, with his high school career being at the powerhouse Converse Judson

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High.  It’s important to note that Gaines’ passes defensed record still holds through this day at 38 total.  Maybe one of the scouts has a close relationship with former Rice football head coach David Bailiff — to which I still don’t understand why they fired him — to where they got a good enough tip to bring him in for a workout for an eventual signing.

Gaines was waived by the Browns last week because of injury but the Texans were confident of his readiness whenever they signed him.

It’s tough to tell how much he’ll play this Sunday as he has to learn the system on the fly but it’s highly likely that we’ll see some action from rookie corner Lonnie Johnson Jr. as I know he’s chomping at the bit for some action.

Next. Texans: Nick Martin's contract extension was unnecessary. dark

We’ll have to see how it goes — go Houston Texans!

Gaines, 28, amassed 39 combined tackles — 31 solos — along with two passes defensed, zero interceptions and one tackle-for-loss through 11 games — six starts — with the Bills and Browns in 2018.