Demaryius Thomas trade grade: Texans get Deshaun Watson another weapon

Houston Texans

The loss of Will Fuller left the Texans without a compliment for DeAndre Hopkins. The team solved that issue by dealing for Demaryius Thomas.

If the Texans are going to maintain their position atop the AFC South standings their offense can’t afford to slip. That’s precisely why Houston made the move to bring in Demaryius Thomas. He’ll slot in for Will Fuller as the team’s No. 2 wideout.

The Broncos clearly understand they are not contenders this season. That’s why moving Thomas now makes sense for John Elway and company. The 31-year-old wide receiver’s cap hit escalates to $14,000,000 in 2019. It’s highly unlikely the Broncos were going to hang on to him at that price. Moving him now gives the organization some additional draft capital to aid their significant rebuild.

As always, the evaluation on these sorts of deals comes down to price. Reports claim the Broncos will receive a fourth rounder and will swap seventh rounders with the Texans to complete the transaction. That represents a sizable investment for a player who’s likely to be a rental for the Texans.

Texans Get

Demaryius Thomas, Seventh round pick

Broncos Get

Fourth round pick, seventh round pick


It’s clear Houston needed to make a move to replace Fuller. Ideally, they could have secured another speedster to balance out their offense. Thomas isn’t that, but he is a big body who can make plays down the field for Deshaun Watson.

Our only concern here is that the Texans offensive line may not give Thomas enough time to work down the field and get open. Look for the former Bronco to get a chance to catch some jump balls from Watson, but he’s not going to have the luxury of working deep timing routes down the field.

Fortunately for Houston, the price for their rental isn’t outrageous. Losing a fourth rounder will hurt them in April, but it’s worth it if Thomas helps them reach the playoffs.

Grade: B


Credit Elway and company for finally starting to lean into the rebuild. Losing Thomas will hurt them in the short-term, but that should only strengthen their draft position. Moving Thomas also gives more of an opportunity to Courtland Sutton to show what he’s really capable of.

Next: Midterm grades for every NFL team

The best part about the move for Denver is that it doesn’t really cost them anything. They get an extra fourth rounder for a player they were going to cut in the offseason. We haven’t loved many of the Broncos’ personnel moves lately, but this one is a no brainer.

Grade: A

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