The Houston Texans completely overhauled their roster this offseason and first-year general manager Nick Caserio could have even more trades in mind before NFL teams submit their final 53-man rosters on August 31.
Houston has been very active this summer, making a series of trades to shake up its depth chart. The Texans acquired Anthony Miller on July 21, traded for Ka’dar Hollman on August 18, sent Randall Cobb to the Green Bay Packers and John Reid to the Seattle Seahawks.
While Caserio would love to trade Deshaun Watson, a deal is unlikely with teams unwilling to meet a high asking price amid his uncertain future. However, the Texans are fielding calls from clubs interested in two players on the defensive side.
According to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, safety Lonnie Johnson Jr. and edge rusher Shaq Lawson are two of the most heavily discussed players around the league right now. While both would have a role on the Texans’ defense in 2021, they have lost their spot atop the depth chart.
Johnson is the more surprising name being floated in NFL trade rumors. A second-round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, he has flashed some promise early in his NFL career. Pro Football Focus credited him with a 69.1 grade in coverage last season. He still brings intriguing physical traits to the table and it’s no surprise NFL teams believe they could get more out of him than the Texans have.
Houston acquired Lawson this offseason from the Miami Dolphins in exchange for linebacker Benardrick McKinney. The 27-year-old has been a productive edge defender in recent years and is valued across the league for his ability to contain the running game.
Multiple NFL teams, including the Cleveland Browns and New York Jets, are in need of more depth on the defensive line. If Houston is willing to take a late Day 3 pick for Lawson, it wouldn’t be a surprise if a trade is made by Monday.