Texans pass rusher Jadeveon Clowney is still unsigned and not participating in this week’s minicamp. We still don’t know who will make the decision about whether to give Clowney the contract he wants.
That’s because the Texans fired General Manager Brian Gaine and have not yet hired his replacement. Until a new G.M. is hired, Clowney’s status is on hold.
The new G.M. won’t have a lot of time to negotiate with Clowney’s camp, given that the NFL rule says that if a franchise player doesn’t have a long-term deal by July 15, he can only play the season on a one-year contract.
Clowney could end up signing the one-year, $15.967 million franchise tender, he could get a long-term deal, or he could still get traded. There hasn’t been any trade talk surrounding Clowney this offseason, but until we know who the next G.M. is, it’s impossible to say whether the Texans would initiate such talk.
Texans CEO Cal McNair may get involved in the Clowney situation as well. Owners usually say they leave those decisions to the personnel people, but it’s inevitable that Clowney’s contract would come up during a G.M. interview, and the candidate McNair hires is likely to be a candidate who gives McNair a satisfactory answer to that question.
Getting a long-term deal done with Clowney may not be easy. He’s a good player, but it’s easy to see him thinking he should get something in the same neighborhood as his fellow 2014 draftees Khalil Mack and Aaron Donald — and it’s also easy to see a G.M. thinking Clowney isn’t worth that much. The next G.M. will have until July 15 to decide how much he’d be willing to invest in a long-term deal to keep Clowney in Houston.