By almost anyone’s analysis, the Texans did not get enough in the trade of DeAndre Hopkins to the Cardinals. David Johnson, a 2020 second-round choice and a 2021 fourth-round choice in return for Hopkins and a 2020 fourth-round choice seems lopsided in the Cardinals’ favor.
So why did the Texans make it?
Texans General Manager/coach Bill O’Brien said Friday in a town hall meeting with season ticket holders that it happened only because of money. That’s what Ed Werder of ESPN reported two weeks ago, citing an unnamed Texans source who insisted it had nothing to do with O’Brien’s strained relationship with Hopkins.
“It was in the best interest of our team,” O’Brien said on the Friday call, via Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. “DeAndre Hopkins was a great football player. We loved DeAndre Hopkins. He had three years left on his deal, and he wanted a raise. David Johnson is going to be a great addition to our football team.”
Hopkins reportedly wants a new deal in the $18 million to $20 million range despite three years left on his current deal with base salaries of $12.5 million, $13.5 million, and $13.915 million. The Cardinals have had at least preliminary discussions with Hopkins’ representation.
At least twice more on the call, O’Brien pulled the “every decision we make will always be made in the best interest of the team” card.
“Any decision that’s made is made with the team in mind,” O’Brien said at one point. “Capital T Capital E Capital A. Capital M in mind.”
Still, no one can argue the Hopkins trade made the Texans a better team. It simply didn’t.