Originally Posted by eriadoc
Not hindsight. Remember this thread
? Winston was playing well his last season here. There was some Pro Bowl chatter. He had his limitations, but they were the sort of limitations that most above average but not elite tackles have.
I never felt like Butler was an adequate replacement plan. I gave Newton the benefit of the doubt early on, since he was young, but neve rfelt good about him either. Here are some of my posts from the offseason/preseason after Winston was cut:
I think there's a little revisionist history going on these days.
You can't have a salary cap discussion without discussing the lack of ability to replace players. Otherwise, we could just all propose that they replace everyone with vet minimums. Winston was a better tackle than anyone the Texans had in the pipeline, and he was under contract. And in case everyone forgot, the Texans never even attempted to renegotiate his contract! They just outright cut him as a complete surprise. They gave us that BS rationale that they respected him too much to try and renegotiate his contract, while they forced Walter to take a pay cut and renegotiated AJ's contract. Guess that means they didn't respect the latter two players, huh?
That kind of crap is on Rick Smith. IF you're going to cut a solid player, you better damn sure have a replacement plan and a contingency plan or you run the risk of looking like a dumbass at the very least, and costing your team some wins very possibly.
I think they made tactical mistakes and counted on players they shouldn't have... I don't think they "had" to cut Winston because of the cap. And, I certainly know they could have spent some money this off-season on the right tackle position... They chose not to. It is not due to the cap. With A.Smith's, W. Smith's contracts and others, they had a ton of room to work with. They were content with Newton. OOPS!. It reminds me of the errors they made in 2009-10 in the secondary, particularly at the safety position.