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Former Cowboys DT Maliek Collins Signs 1-Year, $6M Contract with Texans in FA

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistMarch 15, 2021

Las Vegas Raiders defensive tackle Maliek Collins (97) laughs on the sidelines against the Denver Broncos during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Jan.. 3, 2021, in Denver. (AP Photo/Justin Edmonds)
Justin Edmonds/Associated Press

The Houston Texans no longer have J.J. Watt, but they bolstered their defensive line on Monday. 

Defensive tackle Maliek Collins' agent, Drew Rosenhaus, told ESPN's Adam Schefter his client agreed to a one-year deal worth up to $6 million with the AFC South team. Collins played the 2020 campaign for the Las Vegas Raiders after spending his first four seasons in the league with the Dallas Cowboys.

Dallas selected the Nebraska product with a third-round pick in the 2016 NFL draft, and he started 55 games for the team during the next four years.

While he never posted more than 23 tackles in an individual season for the Cowboys, he was a pass-rushing force in the middle of the line with 14.5 sacks in four years. His ability to either power his way through the middle of the offensive line or occupy multiple blockers also helped open up rushing lanes on the outside for his teammates.

However, he struggled in 2020 with the Raiders.

Collins finished the season with 15 tackles and zero sacks in 12 games. Pro Football Focus gave him a dismal 39.2 overall player grade for his effort, which was quite the drop from his 64.7 during the 2019 campaign.

Houston surely hopes he bounces back and rediscovers his previous form, which isn't that far-fetched considering he is just 25 years old and theoretically in the middle of his prime.