Former Green Bay Packers offensive guard Lane Taylor will be getting a fresh start with the Houston Texans next season.
According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the Texans and Taylor agreed to terms Tuesday on a one-year contract for the 2021 season that gives the 31-year-old veteran the opportunity to reunite with James Campen, his former Packers offensive line coach.
Source: Former #Packers starting guard Lane Taylor has agreed to terms on a 1-year deal with the #Texans, reuniting with his former GB OL coach James Campen. Taylor is coming off an ACL, but will be good to go for training camp.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 15, 2021
Taylor spent his first eight years in the NFL with the Packers, joining the team as an undrafted rookie out of Oklahoma State in 2013 and serving as backup interior lineman until he earned the starting left guard job at the start of 2016. He missed just two games over his three years as a full-time starter, but consecutive season-ending injuries in 2019 and 2020 forced Green Bay to find other solutions for their offensive line.
No reports have suggested the Packers made any attempt to re-sign Taylor, but he did take multiple free-agent visits over the past month. The San Francisco 49ers hosted him on March 19 shortly after the start of the 2021 league year, but he left unsigned and landed another visit with the Texans at the beginning of April.
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Injuries Deflated Taylor’s 2020 Comeback
For a short while, anyways, there seemed to be a slim chance Taylor could get another chance with the Packers. He caught a tough break in 2019 when he suffered a season-ending biceps injury in the second game, watching then-rookie Elgton Jenkins step into his starting role and putting him in jeopardy of losing his roster spot.
Rather than accept defeat, though, Taylor took a pay cut for the final year of his contract and worked himself back into competitive shape for 2020 training camp, where he beat out Lucas Patrick to win a new starting job at right guard. The only trouble was that toward the end of his first start in Week 1, he went down with a torn ACL and was forced to spend a second straight Packers season on the injured reserve.
There was some speculation that the Packers would bring him back on a low-cost veteran contract, fortifying the guard position of their offensive line while they explore replacement options for center Corey Linsley. Instead, they will now look for some of their younger players to step up behind Jenkins and Patrick, including 2020 draft picks Jon Runyan and Simon Stepaniak.
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