The Houston Texans have found their next starting center in former Seattle Seahawks starter Justin Britt. The veteran announced on Friday via Instagram that he had signed with coach David Culley's team, marking the first major acquisition of the Culley/Nick Caserio era.
Having missed the 2020 season following his release by the Seahawks in April, Britt returns to the NFL with a team in need of a starting center following the recent release of Nick Martin.
Between 2014 and 2018, Britt had missed only two games, before missing eight in 2019 due to a torn ACL. A starter during all of his six seasons in Seattle, the former second-round pick was clearly well-loved by his former teammate Russell Wilson, who said upon Britt's release: "Your best days are ahead of you."
So far, Britt has twice posted two PFF season grades above 70 (2014 and 2016), being named a Pro Bowl alternate in '16.
Now 29, Britt joins a Texans offensive line that struggled to find its form in 2020, allowing 50 sacks and ranking 30th in the league in run blocking, per PFF. Not only will the line feature a new center, but with James Campen joining as offensive line coach, many will hope that these changes will help bring the best out of a group with plenty of talent in the likes of tackles Laremy Tunsil and Tytus Howard.
In signing Britt to the aforementioned one-year deal at $3.2 million with a chance to rise to $5 million, the Texans take a low-risk high-reward approach to free agency in a deal that should improve their line from day one.
However, which quarterback they will be blocking for remains to be seen, with Deshaun Watson seemingly adamant in wanting a trade.
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