As NFL teams commit countless hours preparing for the draft, there is a second wave of talent that becomes available as soon as the draft concludes. Immediately following the 255th draft pick, known as “Mr. Irrelevant”, teams begin lining up signings for the best players still left to be selected. In a bidding war of sorts, teams must strike quickly to sign the players they would like to bring to camp with the team. The Houston Texans did just that on Saturday, as they quickly came to an agreement with University of Washington linebacker Joe “Jo-Jo” Mathis. Here’s a breakdown of the player the Houston Texans have signed.
Joe Mathis, Edge Rusher
Mathis was projected to go much higher by many draft and media pundits. CBSSports’ Dane Brugler even had him projected as a 3rd-4th rounder in his exquisite NFL Draft Guide. However, Mathis slipped out of the NFL Draft, altogether. This was due to concerns over his foot, which he injured during the 2016 season. He only ended up playing 6 games in 2016, but he finished with 5.0 sacks. Mathis shows the ability to rush from a 3-4 defense, and can be effective as a nickel pass rusher. However, questions remain concerning his durability, size and his character. Mathis struggled at times with his maturity at the University of Washington. He is in a good position to develop, however, as the Texans have several veteran coaches in place to help coach Mathis up.
Houston Texans Take:
As a Texan, Mathis will enter camp looking to become a reliable option as a sub-package rusher for the team. Although he went undrafted, Mathis shows the requisite pass rush moves on tape that can make him a value signing by the Texans. It will be up to Mathis to see if he can adjust to the NFL game.