Which comes first: having a quarterback who’s worth protecting, or securing the pieces of an offensive line that can protect a quarterback?
Most would say the former, and it wouldn’t be close. In an increasingly quarterback-driven league, good is merely adequate at that position.
But what if you’re a general manager and your quarterback recently suffered a significant injury, leaving a lingering question mark heading into this season? And what if although you’re confident he can come back and do so strongly, you need to see him run, scramble, and get hit for a full season prior to making a decision on his future with your team?
That’s where Texans general manager Rick Smith is with Matt Schaub, whose contract expires next March. And that’s why he prioritized Schaub’s primary protector as he was digging into his money sack.