The Houston Texans announced Friday that they have released starting center Nick Martin.
The move will cost the Texans $ 2.5 million in dead money against the salary cap, but will save the team $ 6.25 million.
Martin was due to pay $ 8.75 million in 2021. Notre Dame’s former 2016 second-round pick missed just two games in his four seasons with the Texans.
The 27-year-old had a low year in 2020 as his bad plays in December may have cost the Texans some games, though it’s unfair to attribute Houston’s disastrous 4-12 season to those plays. Yet they were part of the mosaic of failures and missed opportunities that made up Houston’s disappointing finish.
Martin hoped to use the poor season in 2020 as motivation to trade the Texans in 2021.
“There is no question that it is motivation,” Martin told reporters on January 4. “We got to the playoffs and we know we have the flavor of the playoffs and that’s the goal is to get back there and keep winning games. Not doing it, it hurts. But it has been, as everyone knows, an incredibly difficult year. A year in which, when you reflect, you learn a lot about yourself, about your teammates.
“One thing that I am very proud of about this team is the way we fight. We could easily have packed it weeks ago. We did not do it. We fight in every game. We scratched, we scratched and obviously we didn’t get the result we wanted because at the end of the day people score wins and losses and that’s how they measure you. But we definitely fight, and that’s just a testament to the guys in this locker room and on this team. “
Martin will have to continue the fight in another NFL city as the Texans continue to reorganize their roster in an attempt to get off to a fresh and optimistic start with general manager Nick Caserio and coach David Culley.