I've been getting quite a few emails from Houston Texans fans, most of whom weren't saddened when Mario Williams moved on. Here's a pretty well-reasoned example from an avid Texans follower after my column in Thursday's News:
"Most knowledgable Houston fans can't help but chuckle and say "you should've just asked us, we could've told you that."
"This article could've and has been written in Houston countless times over he last six years. Search for Houston Chronicle's Lance Zierlein's article to Buffalo fans on what to expect, both good and bad. LZ is one of the top football minds in Houston and fairly assessed Mario I think.
"The line "He seems a little too laid back" made me laugh out loud. That line will be engraved on the tombstone of his career. He has the body of a Greek god but strikes me as a guy who plays football because he happens to be good at it, not because he loves it. He loves, LOVES the expensive cars, motorcycles, jet skis and other toys the game has afforded him. I don't know if he loves the game.
"Don't get me wrong. Mario doesn't suck. He's above average. He's pretty good. But pretty good wasn't worth scrapping what the Texans are building. Pretty good shouldn't make you the all time highest paid defender.
"He will have a game where he gets 2.5 or 3 sacks and makes you say "now THIS is what I've been waiting to see!!!" . Then he'll have 3 or 4 or 5 games where he pretty much blends in, isn't terrible but doesn't have a huge effect on the game. That is the pattern we've observed in Houston for six years.
"Also, the surprise revelation of a wrist injury...nothing new. A couple years ago Mario was largely ineffective all year, and only after the season did we find out he was "playing through" an injury all season. That is of course when he isn't truly injured like last year when he missed 11 games and the Texans went on to have their most dominant defense ever and finally win a playoff game.
"Just temper your expectations, learn to be okay with a shy guy who isn't a leader, prefers to blend in and buy cool toys, occasionally rack up sacks but then be run of the mill for awhile. Either that or be disappointed.
"We really honestly don't have sour grapes toward Mario. Our defense was just as good or better without him. I was genuinely terrified when our GM said signing him was a "high priority" and gave a relieved shrug when he went to Buffalo. We have far more crucial players we needed or still need to resign like Foster, Schaub, Cushing, Barwin, Brown, Myers, etc. Mario never dominated enough to justify ruining our cap situation for him.
"Glad to be free of wondering when he'll finally put it together."
Fan in Houston