HOUSTON - The Houston Texans have made plenty of signings to fix their defense under new coordinator Lovie Smith. Their recent one will be the name that certainly has fans' attention.
The Texans agreed to terms with cornerback Desmond King on Thursday evening. According to his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, it is to be a one-year deal worth $3.5 million.
King, 26, was acquired last season in a midseason trade by the Tennessee Titans from the Los Angeles Chargers. In his first game with the Music City club, he returned a fumble 63 yards for a touchdown en route to a 24-17 win over the Chicago Bears.
With both teams last season, King recorded 55 total tackles, two sacks, two pass breakups and a fumbled returned for a touchdown last season. The Titans were eliminated in the AFC Wild Card Round by the Baltimore Ravens.
The Chargers selected King in the fifth round of the 2017 NFL Draft out of Iowa. A former Jim Thorpe Award winner, King earned reps at the starting nickel corner and earned first-team All-Pro at the role in 2018. He was a second-team All-Pro at punt returner.
King can be used in a variety of ways. Not only is he versatile while playing in the slot, he also thrives in zone coverage. The Texans are expected to run plenty of zone looks with Smith's Tampa 2 defensive approach this season.
King also works well as a blitzer. Last season, he recorded a sack against Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson in a 27-20 Houston victory. In three of his four seasons, King has posted at least two sacks.
Aggressive in coverage and physical against the run, King should command the open field of the Texans' secondary. Pairing the former Chargers' standout with Justin Reid could provide stability for the 24th-ranked pass defense and the 32nd-ranked run defense.
In four NFL seasons King has recorded 244 career tackles, four interceptions, five forced fumbles, five fumble recoveries, 16 tackles for loss and 14 quarterback hits. As a special teams player, King has returned 51 punts for 455 yards and two touchdowns in his career.