One year after signing him to a three-year, $22.5 million deal, the Houston Texans have cut ties with starting safety Tashaun Gipson, as first reported by NFL Network's Mike Garafolo. The move comes days after the team signed ninth-year veteran Michael Thomas, a former spot starter with the Miami Dolphins and New York Giants, and will save Houston approximately $3.25 million in 2020.
ESPN's Sarah Barshop noted Monday that Texans coach/general manager Bill O'Brien did not mention Gipson while discussing the team's safety plans after the 2020 draft, during which Houston did not add to the position. And now, just one year into Gipson's pact with the Texans, the former Pro Bowler has been sent to the open market.
Gipson was active during his first and only season in Houston, logging three interceptions and eight pass deflections in 14 starts. He ended the year on injured reserve, however, with a back issue. It's also possible O'Brien just preferred cheaper alternatives opposite former third-round pick Justin Reid. The team added Eric Murray and Jaylen Watkins, two veteran reserves, earlier this offseason and would've also owed Gipson $7.5 million in 2021. By releasing the 29-year-old, who split the first seven years of his NFL career with the Cleveland Browns and Jacksonville Jaguars, they'll likely save a total of more than $10 million in salary cap space over the next two years.
It's worth noting the Texans could also have a bigger safety move in store. The Houston Chronicle Carolina Panthers this offseason. Justin pitched the idea of teaming up with his sibling to O'Brien, per the report, and Eric, a one-time Pro Bowler, is fresh off a productive season in Carolina.that the Texans were considering pursuing Reid's older brother, Eric, who was cut by the