Should the Texans consider Mike Wallace?

In this Insider piece, K.C. Joyner lays out a four-point rationale for a team to pursue Mike Wallace, who will be a restricted free agent.

  1. Their level of need for a dominant vertical wide receiver

  2. Their salary-cap situation

  3. The level of first-round pick they would have to give up

  4. Their incentive level for making life tougher for the Steelers (from a salary-cap and/or personnel perspective)

He concludes the Patriots, Niners, Ravens and Bengals would be the best teams to pursue Wallace with an offer sheet. If Wallace signs one and the Steelers don’t choose to match, the team that gets Wallace would surrender its first-round pick as compensation.

Two teams in the AFC South are receiver-needy and would at least have to discuss Wallace.

Jacksonville has the money, but holds the seventh pick, which would be a steep price to pay. Maybe Wallace is worth it. But the Jaguars can add a high-quality free-agent or two at no draft-pick cost, then add another very good player at No. 7.

Houston doesn’t have the money, but the 26th pick is a far more reasonable price. A dominant vertical receiver would really help the offense, and making life tough on the Steelers would be a bonus in a fight for playoff spots and positioning over the next several years.

Said Joyner when I asked him about Wallace and Houston: "Texans + Wallace = AFC Super Bowl favorites. Wallace & Johnson would be hands down best 1-2 WR tandem in NFL."

It will take a big contract to get Wallace, however. Mario Williams is probably gone, because they can't afford him, and they are attempting to lock up Arian Foster, Chris Myers and probably Mike Brisiel.

I don’t expect Houston will go for Wallace.

But they don’t have a ton of needs, even if they lose most of their free agents. If they can create the cap room, in part by parting with Jacoby Jones and Kevin Walter, why not seriously consider it? Then they'd have Andre Johnson, Wallace, a kid like Jeff Maehl and a couple draft picks at receiver.

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