The Raiders are poised to sign tight end OJ Howard away from the Texans, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported Monday.
Howard will try to replace Darren Waller, the star tight end the Raiders traded to the Giants last week. Waller was the Raiders’ starting tight end for the past three seasons, although injuries limited him to nine games last season.
Howard is likely to become a key target for new Raiders quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. Howard will join an offense that includes playmakers such as wide receiver Davante Adams, running back Josh Jacobs and wide receiver Hunter Renfrow.
Howard is coming off one season with the Texans, in which he recorded 10 receptions for 145 yards and two touchdowns in 13 games.
The 28-year-old began his NFL career with the Buccaneers, spending five seasons with Tampa Bay after the team selected him in the first round of the 2017 NFL draft. He started one game during Tampa Bay’s 2020 Super Bowl season.
Over the course of his six-year pro career, Howard has registered 129 receptions for 1,882 yards with 17 touchdown catches.
The Raiders went 6–11 last season and missed the playoffs.