The Houston Texans officially signed outside linebacker Lamarr Houston and defensive end Kendall Langford on Wednesday and placed J.J. Watt and Whitney Mercilus on injured reserve with season-ending injuries.
Houston’s front office and coaching staff knew talent needed to be added to the front-seven after losing two of their best defensive players in Week 5 and signed two veterans with a combined 47.5 sacks and 54 tackles for a loss.
“Two good veterans, really good guys, a lot of experience,” Texans head coach Bill O’Brien said of Houston and Langford on Wednesday, via Houston’s team website. “Both have experienced adversity in their careers, which I think is a good thing. They’ve had to come back from injuries, they’ve had to come back and play at a high level. They worked out well. They’re obviously in shape, which is the big key in those workouts. Both heavy-handed players relative to the positions that they play. Smart players, guys that I believe can help us. So, I think they’re definitely two good additions to the team.”
Houston, a former second-round pick, spent the past three seasons with the Chicago Bears but played in just 26 games during that span due to season-ending knee injuries in both 2014 and 2016.
The eight-year veteran outside linebacker recorded 42 tackles and a career-high eight sacks with the Bears in 2015 and will look to help the Texans win a third consecutive AFC South division title this season.
Langford, a 10-year veteran, spent the past two seasons with division rival Indianapolis but was placed on season-ending injured reserve last year with a knee injury.
The 6-foot-6, 313-pound defensive end recorded a career-high seven sacks in his first season with the Colts and has batted down 21 passes at the line of scrimmage during the course of his career.
“I’m just going to come and compete, try to do my job, not going to try and fill J.J.’s shoes,” Langford said. “Those are big shoes to fill. I’m going to come and do my job and trust the guy beside me does his job and if we all do our job together, we can get it done.”
The Texans host the winless Cleveland Browns at NRG Stadium this Sunday.