Texans trade for Patriots TE Ryan Izzo, release Darren Fells

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Coty Davis
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The Houston Texans have gotten rid of one of Deshaun Watson’s favorite targets over the past two seasons, and have brought in another one of new general manager Nick Caserio’s former players.

According to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle, the Houston Texans have cut tight end Darren Fells. The release of Fells came moments after the Texans traded for TE Ryan Izzo from the New England Patriots.

“Izzo was a seventh-round pick out of Florida State in 2018, and has been with the Patriots for the last three seasons,” Patriots Wire managing editor Henry McKenna said. “He missed all of his rookie year on injured reserve, but has amassed 19 catches for 313 yards and a touchdown over the last two years. He entered the NFL with a reputation as a blocking tight end, but didn’t live up to those expectations. Izzo was thrust into the top tight end spot last season with 62% of the offensive snaps. He had just 13 catches for 199 yards.

Fells joined the Texans during the 2019 offseason after a short stint with the Cleveland Browns. Fells became an integral part of the Texans’ 10-6 season, where he recorded 341 yards on 34 receptions. With a career-high seven touchdowns, Fells set a Texans’ record for the most red zone receptions by a tight end, and finished the year ranked third in the league at his position.

Fells’ career-season in 2019 awarded him a two-year contract extension worth $7 million. Last season, a crowded tight end group led by Jordon Akins prevented Fells from replicating his success two consecutive years. He ended the 2020 season with 312 reception yards and four touchdowns.

In addition to Akins and now Izzo, the Texans have a tight end core that also features the likes of Pharaoh Brown and Kahale Warring. Prior to his release, Fells was due to make $1.5 million this coming season.

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Grading the Texans' 2021 NFL free agency signings

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