The Houston Texans have given Tremon Smith a new lease on life in the National Football League by offering up the former Kansas City Chiefs draft pick a one-year extension as the current 2021 season draws near to a close for the last place team in the AFC South.
According to NFL reporter Ian Rapoport, the Texans gave Smith a one-year extension worth up to $1.6 million for the 2022 campaign, with a $1.1 million base total, a $100K roster bonus, a $150K signing bonus and plenty more in incentives. While that contract is small potatoes in the scheme of things, it’s good to see Smith earn that kind of money since most Chiefs fans would likely read this and be surprised that Smith is still in the NFL at all.
Smith first entered the NFL as part of the first draft class with Chiefs general manager Brett Veach in charge—a class that’s undoubtedly one of the worst in team history. Breeland Speaks, the team’s second round pick, hasn’t played a down since the 2018 season. Kahlil McKenzie was a project that never worked out. Dorian O’Daniel and Armani Watts have stuck around on special teams duty as cost-controlled young talent and nothing more. Only Derrick Nnadi, an impressive interior lineman, has saved this class from being entirely forgettable.
Tremon Smith has been given a new lease on his NFL life with the Houston Texans.
Smith was the first of two sixth-round picks in the 2018 draft by Veach, signed as a small-school defensive back with return capabilities at No. 196 overall. One year after he was drafted, the team toyed with moving him to running back in the preseason but that was short-lived and he was waived entirely before the 2019 season started.
Since that time, he’s been claimed or signed and then waived by the Green Bay Packers, Philadelphia Eagles, and Indianapolis Colts before landing with the Houston Texans earlier this season. He’s hung on as a kick return candidate when teams are in a fix, but Houston has really liked what they’ve seen this age 25 season from Smith. While almost all of his snaps this season for the Texans have come on special teams, he did start a single game at corner in Week 3, so maybe there’s a belief here that he can develop more in that area given more time.