Published: Wed, March 13, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Chiefs release 4-time Pro Bowl LB Justin Houston

Chiefs release 4-time Pro Bowl LB Justin Houston

The Chiefs made a long-expected move official on Sunday, releasing veteran linebacker Justin Houston in a salary-cap decision that frees up $14 million in cap space with free agency beginning on Wednesday. But Houston has been slowed by injuries the past four seasons, and has been unable to replicate the 22-sack season that helped him land the contract.

Houston was certainly a cap casualty candidate heading into the offseason, and it seems that the Chiefs deemed him replaceable, especially considering his price tag. He played in 102 games (96 starts) during his eight seasons with the franchise and registered 377 total tackles, 78.5 sacks, 14 forced fumbles and eight fumble recoveries. He finishes with the fourth most sacks in team history, behind Derrick Thomas, Tamba Hali and Neil Smith.

Despite his release, Houston should have no problem finding work and even making good money given the fact that he is still an above average pass rusher in the NFL. "We appreciate his contributions to our team and community". By releasing Houston, it allows him to find a new team.

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Nearly immediately after trading Khalil Mack before last season, Jon Gruden lamented how hard it is to find edge rushers. The 30-year-old former third-round pick out of Georgia spent all eight National Football League seasons in Kansas City, where he logged 78.5 sacks, 32 passes defended, 14 forced fumbles and four interceptions. "I have a great deal of respect for Justin as a player and person and I wish him and his family the best moving forward".

"You can never have enough of that", Veach said. They struggled a year ago, but they still have a number of players who made a Super Bowl run. "I certainly think there will be a lot of names from those defensive players called early on".

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