Chiefs release veteran pass-rusher Justin Houston

Chiefs release veteran pass-rusher Justin Houston

The Kansas City Chiefs released veteran linebacker Justin Houston on Sunday after they were unable to drum up enough trade interest, ending the tenure of one of the best pass rushers in club history.

But the six-year, $101 million contract Houston signed in 2015 made it hard for the Chiefs to keep him, and they had been seeking a trade, general manager Brett Veach recently told the Kansas City Star. He caught 11 passes for 117 yards and three touchdowns in 16 games last season while serving primarily as a blocker.

Houston played collegiately at the University of Georgia.

Harris, 27, will make about $1 million more than the original-round tender, which would have allowed other teams to sign him away from Denver for a seventh-round pick instead of a second-rounder. "I have a great deal of respect for Justin as a player and a person and I wish him and his family the best moving forward". He was set to be a free agent in 2021 and still has two years left on his contract, with $7.1 million set to count as dead cap money for the Chiefs.

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Chiefs Coach Andy Reid said he has been fortunate to get to know Houston over the last six seasons.

In one of the best pass-rushing seasons in National Football League history, Houston finished with 22 sacks, breaking the franchise record of 20 set by Derrick Thomas in 1990 and falling one-half sack short of Michael Strahan's National Football League record set in 2001. 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. Now, according to FanSided's Matt Verderame, the Chiefs have released the four-time Pro Bowler. He's really helped set the tone, and I appreciate the work he put in with us.

Houston and Tamba Hali become one of the NFL's top pass-rushing tandems.

Helmets line the sidelines of the Kansas City Chiefs during a preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on August 19, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland.

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