The Kansas City Chiefs will be releasing outside linebacker Justin Houston after eight seasons with the team.
After attempting to trade him and finding no suitors, the Kansas City Chiefs are going to release veteran outside linebacker Justin Houston, per league sources. The release of the Pro Bowl veteran may not happen on Monday but is expected in the coming days.
Houston, 30, notched nine sacks last season before totaling another two in the playoffs in a win over the Indianapolis Colts. He remains one of the more productive pass-rushers in the league, but injury concerns and a bloated cap figure have caused the cash-strapped Chiefs to release him.
With the move, Kansas City saves $14 million in cap space, putting it around $39 million under the $188.2 million threshold. However, Dee Ford is likely to come in at $15.4 million, basically making these two moves a wash.
As for Houston, he remains a player who will be in demand. After seeing Brandon Graham get $13 million per year with the Philadelphia Eagles at the same age, it stands to reason Houston will cash in once more.
A few teams worth watching? The Cleveland Browns, Indianapolis Colts and Green Bay Packers all have ties to Houston. Cleveland General Manager John Dorsey signed Houston after the 2014 season to a whopping six-year, $101 million deal. In Indianapolis, GM Chris Ballard was around throughout Houston’s tenure in Kansas City, and the Colts have an obvious need for a pass-rusher. As for Green Bay, outside linebackers coach Mike Smith spent time with the Houston last year in the same role with the Chiefs.
Additionally, keep an eye on the Atlanta Falcons. Houston is from Atlanta, and the Falcons are also in need of help off the edge.