Texans busy making sure they keep their own free agents

- The Houston Texans moved quickly to re-sign punter Shane Lechler, kicker Nick Novak and cornerback Charles James II.

Lechler and Novak were unrestricted free agents while James was a second-year exclusive rights free agent.

In retaining Lechler, the Texans keep one of the best punters in the history of the game.

Lechler joined the Texans as a free agent in 2013 after spending the first 13 years of his career with the Oakland Raiders.

Lechler, the NFL’s career leader in gross average at 47.5 yards, has been elected to the Pro Bowl seven times and named First-Team All-Pro six times.

Lechler, who will be 40 in August, was named to the Pro Football Hall of Fame All-2000s First Team.

A former star at Texas A&M, Lechler is from nearby East Bernard.

Novak signed with the Texans in September after Randy Bullock was waived.

Novak was 18-of-21 on field goals, and did not miss inside the 50.

James has been a hit with the Texans on and off the field.

He became a fan favorite during HBO's Hard Knocks series, and helped give the Texans excellent depth at cornerback and solid work on special teams.

"I'm happy I don't have to go anywhere else," James said in an interview with FOX 26 Sports. They could have chosen not to sign me back.

"I love Houston. With the Super Bowl being here this year hopefully I can help make something special happen."a

The Texans also reached a contract agreement with offensive lineman Jeff Adams.

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