The Houston Texans Should Trade for Todd Gurley

Todd Gurley trade destinations could include the Houston Texans.
Todd Gurley trade destinations could include the Houston Texans. / John McCoy/Getty Images

After the Houston Texans got a surprisingly small return in a trade for superstar wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, fans may not want to see Bill O'Brien swing any more deals this offseason.

The Los Angeles Rams are looking to move on from Todd Gurley, though. On the surface it might seem like a terrible idea to add another high-priced injury-riddled running back to the stable to play alongside David Johnson, there are some reasons that a deal could actually make a ton of sense.

As things stand, the Rams are in a pretty terrible position, long-term. They're low on salary cap space, and they don't own a first-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft or the 2021 NFL Draft. In addition to Gurley, they're also reportedly looking to move wide receiver Brandin Cooks. In short, they sound desperate.

That's a bad combination with the fact that Gurley isn't exactly going to excite teams. Ezekiel Elliott is the only running back in the NFL owed more money per season than Gurley. This immediately takes any team without excess cap space out of the running, shrinking the market significantly. If cutting Gurley outright is really on the table, don't expect it to take more than a mid or late-round pick to land the two-time All-Pro.

The Texans are flush with cap space though, sitting fifth in the NFL with a little over $47 million to work with. You never want to waste cap space, but having that much flexibility opens the door for high-risk, high-reward additions like this one.

Gurley's overall numbers, of course, fell way off in 2019. Some of that can be attributed to an overall drop in offensive efficiency, and in run blocking. In 2018 he averaged 2.6 yards before first contact per rush attempt, and that mark fell to 2.2 in 2019. He also broke tackles at an even higher rate last year than in 2018, averaging one per 10.6 carries (up from one per 15.1 in 2018).

David Johnson is far from a safe bet, and bringing more to the table as a receiver, Gurley's complementary style could make him a great fit. Pairing the two would also reduce the workload either would be asked to carry, helping keep them both healthier.

Gurley's contract also becomes less egregious after the 2020 season. He carries a $17.3 million cap hit in 2020, and releasing him would cost $12.6 million in dead cap. His cap hit is $13.2 and $14.2 million in the next two years, with that dead money falling to $8.4 million and $4.2 million. If the deal doesn't pan out, it becomes increasingly less costly to move on.

The Houston offense needs some firepower now that Hopkins is out of town, and while Gurley would be a risky acquisition, he could also prove to be a serious difference-maker.

Get $20 FREE when you sign up for FanDuel Racing, plus we’ll match your first deposit in site credit up to $50!

Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.