Shane Lechler to visit Houston

Oakland punter Shane Lechler is one of the better remaining AFC West free agents.

His market is about to get going. The Houston Chronicle is reporting that Lechler, one of the greatest punters of all time, will visit the Houston Texans on Thursday. Lechler is from Texas and played at Texas A&M. Prior to the start of free agency, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that Lechler wants to sign with the Texans.

The Raiders have many needs and limited resources, so if Lechler is offered a strong deal he may join the litany of Oakland free agents who have left the team this year.

Lechler is 36 and, by his standards, is coming off a subpar year.

If Lechler leaves, the Raiders would likely give Marquette King the first opportunity to take over. He was stashed on injured reserve last year. King has a strong leg, but he needs to show consistency if Lechler does leave.

UPDATE: The Charlotte Observer reports the Carolina Panthers signed Oakland free agent Mike Mitchell. He was a surprise second-round pick in 2009. Mitchell was more of a special teams player in Oakland and never developed as a safety.