Texans won't negotiate with Schaub until after 2012 season

Arthur Arkush
AFC South Spin cycle: Texans get controversial win, Colts win ugly

Contrary to a report that surfaced on Friday, there is absolutely zero chance of the Texans signing QB Matt Schaub to a contract extension prior to the completion of the 2012 season, the way we hear it.

Schaub, who is entering the final season of his six-year, $48 million contract, signed in 2007, is coming off a season-ending lisfranc injury and has yet to lead Houston into the postseason; backup T.J. Yates guided the Texans to their first-ever postseason appearance and victory after Schaub went down with the foot injury.

According to a source close to the situation, nothing would make the front office happier than seeing Schaub return to form, lead the Texans deep into the postseason and earn a lucrative long-term deal next offseason. GM Rick Smith and head coach Gary Kubiak think of Schaub like a son, we hear, and the leading passer in Texans history has always performed extremely well in Kubiak’s offense when healthy. But to lock up their QB now, before he has proven that he will be 100 percent after the injury, makes no sense at all. The source pointed out that, the only way — barring injury — Schaub does not wind up with a new long-term deal after the season is if the Texans regress badly, missing the playoffs, and Schaub is the primary culprit behind their struggles.

What’s more, the Texans are gearing up this month to open negotiations with OLT Duane Brown and OLB Connor Barwin, both of whom are coming off career years and have expiring contracts at the end of the 2012 season. Working in the club's favor is that none of the three players — Brown, Barwin or Schaub — are expected to make unreasonable contract demands, such as becoming the highest-paid players at their position.

As for Yates, who performed admirably under the most difficult of circumstances last season, we hear the Texans are quite fond of him, for now, solely as a backup to Schaub. Yates has the makings of a solid pro, but word is he has not yet proven that he is Schaub's heir apparent, but rather a QB who could again be successful in a pinch.