Earlier this offseason, the Houston Texans traded all-world wideout DeAndre Hopkins to Arizona in what seemed like one of the most lopsided deals in recent memory. And Houston wasn’t the winner.
But in a recent interview, Texans head coach and general manager Bill O’Brien finally explained why they moved Hopkins. He explained that despite Hopkins having three years left on his contract, he wanted another raise.
While that explanation may justify Houston’s desire to move Hopkins, it doesn’t do a whole lot to explain why they couldn’t get more for him. David Johnson may be one of the NFL’s better running backs, but even packaged with second- and fourth-round draft picks, most analysts would say the Texans got fleeced.
Hopkins signed a five-year, $81 million contract before the 2017 season. But he certainly seemed to be worth every penny over the next three years, recording 315 catches for 4,115 yards and 31 touchdowns. During those three years Hopkins made three straight Pro Bowl and First-Team All-Pro selections.
The Texans also made back-to-back playoff appearances, and had one of their best offenses in team history in 2018.
Even at an average of $16 million per year, that kind of production seems worth a raise.
O’Brien speaks on Hop 👀 pic.twitter.com/ntoznKwIdY
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) April 5, 2020
O’Brien now heads into his seventh season with more power over the organization than ever. And yet, he is quickly challenging some of the NFL’s least popular executives for the mantle of worst decision-maker.
Was Bill O’Brien justified in trading DeAndre Hopkins?