Texans need to get a deal done with Quin

The Houston Texans need to bust it to get a deal done with Glover Quin before March 12th at 4 p.m. ET.

But as a pending free agent gets close to seeing just what the other 31 teams in the league think of him, it's hard not to wait to see.

I expected the Texans would secure Quin, the safety, with a franchise tag of $6.916 million largely because general manager Rick Smith spoke at the combine of keeping options like that available for as long as possible. Had they used the tag, they would have bought themselves exclusive time beyond the start of free agency to get a long-term deal done.

They don't have that now.

Quin is a versatile and important piece of the Texans defense. He's not a bank-breaker, however. Safeties Dashon Goldson, William Moore and Kenny Phillips may all prove to be more costly in free agency. But a team in need of safety help that doesn't want to spend quite as much could do very well to land Quin.

The Texans and defensive coordinator Wade Phillips like to use three safeties and Quin can be linebackerish in that package. Maybe they upgrade at inside linebacker and don't need to go to three safeties as much.

Their base defense will still require two, and they don't have anyone on the roster who could step into a void left by Quin.

If they can't secure Quin to play alongside Danieal Manning, I can't see them having the money to get better at the spot. More likely he'd be replaced by a rookie, and secondary continuity and versatility would take a hit.