The Detroit Lions will save some money heading into next season after releasing cornerback Chris Houston.
Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press first reported the news:
Lions are releasing CB Chris Houston— Dave Birkett (@davebirkett) June 13, 2014
This transaction was necessary after the 29-year-old player underwent toe surgery in the offseason. According to Tim Twentyman of DetroitLions.com, the team issued this statement:
Chris Houston underwent a significant medical procedure this spring. Both parties felt that the best course of action at this time is to release Chris and allow him to rehabilitate his injury away from the Club. The Lions appreciate Chris' contributions over the years and wish him the best in his recovery.
The good news is that the player's agent believes Houston will be able to recover and play next season, via Ian Rapoport of NFL.com:
On the other hand, the cornerback does miss out on the rest of a big deal that he signed a year ago. Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com provided the details of his original deal:
Chris Houston a reminder how meaningless long-term deals are in NFL. Lasted one season on a "five-year, $25 million" contract.— gregg rosenthal (@greggrosenthal) June 13, 2014
Birkett reported how much the Lions will save this season and next without Houston on the roster:
Got some clarity on this: Chris Houston's cap number this year is $1.3 million. His $2M injury guarantee is not a factor.— Dave Birkett (@davebirkett) June 13, 2014
Houston's 2015 cap number will be $3.9 million.— Dave Birkett (@davebirkett) June 13, 2014
This will allow the team to complete deals for other players heading into the 2014 season as well as other long-term deals for the future.
Houston has been a consistent contributor for the Lions since coming over from the Atlanta Falcons in 2010. The former second-round pick has started a total of 91 games in seven years, managing to get 13 interceptions and three defensive touchdowns in that stretch.
Even with his injury, there will certainly be plenty of teams looking to add an experienced cornerback who has proved himself over a long period of time in the NFL.
Meanwhile, the Lions will look to get younger in the secondary, with Darius Slay gaining a bigger role as others also step up to improve a unit that ranked 23rd in the league in passing yards allowed.
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