“This ain’t a scene, it’s a GOD D*MN ARMS RACE!”*
*for second place in the AFC East
-Fall Out Boy, 2007
If you believe the old “the ONLY way to beat Tom Brady is to get pressure rushing three and dropping eight into coverage” aphorism, and if your defensive line does not include, say, Aaron Donald or Fletcher Cox, adding Jadeveon Clowney is definitely a good place to start.
Especially if you’re coming off a 7-9 season or a 4-12 season with new coaches all around and possibly a fired GM or two and said GM spent about $1,000 million in cap space before he got told to pack his stuff by 4:45 p.m. and see HR before he left and ... you get the idea.
Meanwhile Clowney is not pleased with both his contract situation and the part where Houston may or may not be trying to get rid of him for something, anything at all, so he’s playing the Texans approximately like he played that one kid at Michigan that one time.
Our frenemies over at Battle Red Blog have already devoted countless man-hours to the Texas-sized FUBAR that is the whole situation, so in the interests of busting them only slightly more than necessary, we’ll just cut to the chase where two of New England’s biggest regional rivals apparently want in on the No. 1 overall pick of the 2014 draft.
Take it away, PFT!
According to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle, the most significant discussions have come with the Miami Dolphins. However, the Texans have also spoken with the Philadelphia Eagles, Seattle Seahawks, Washington Redskins and New York Jets in regards to the standout pass rusher.
“Nothing has advanced” with any of the teams outside of Miami at this point.
The Fins certainly are the more cut-and-dry this-could-work spot for Clowney cap-wise; Miami’s at roughly $26 million in space and could take the $15.96 million for JC’s franchise tag on without blinking. The J-E-T-S are a tad more complicated; they’ve only got about $14.7 million in cap space at the moment, so they’d have to either unload a player that counts towards their cap or include a player in a trade, or both. Or ... I mean, they’re the Jets, if they want someone, they’ll figure out a way to go get ‘em, and that’s not necessarily a compliment.
For what it’s worth, the PFT report above didn’t say anything beyond the Jets had “spoken to” the Texans about Clowney, so maybe they were just doing the good old fashioned Patriots “kick the tires” conversation. Then again, why would you kick the tires if you didn’t at least have some idea on how to make the cap money work if a good deal came along? Wouldn’t you have considered, “Hey, if they’re selling low, we could (insert any of 10,000 ways of creating cap space here)”? Are we giving them too much credit?
Either way, assuming Jadeveon doesn’t get his wish and ends up in either Philly or Seattle, based on that, it looks like the Patriots finally drew a schedule where they didn’t play the Texans this season, and the odds look pretty good they’ll see him twice a season instead.
On the other hand, Clowney also doesn’t mind if he misses part of the regular season in order to go where he wants to go, so, there’s that.
And hey, if you held basically all the cards, we’d all probably do the exact same thing.