According to Chicago Tribune Bears beat writer Brad Biggs, the Houston Texans have agreed to a one-year deal with former Bears punter Brad Maynard.
Maynard, a 14-year veteran, was 17th in the NFL with 24 punts inside the 20, a 40.1 yard average, and 303 return yards against. His best year came in 2008 where he had 40 punts downed and a minuscule 203 return yards against. Return yards against is a key stat because special teams coach Joe Marciano has been on record saying hang time and minimizing return yards is his key for the punt coverage team.
If Maynard's going to fill the void left by the departing Matt Turk and his 233 return yards against then he will have to outkick undrafted free agent punter Brett Hartman out of Central Michigan.
It may be one day, but Hartmann has already caught the eye of CBS RapidReports. According to the RapidReports, Hartmann was hanging punts in the air consistently for 4.5-5.0 seconds. Hartmann also had 37% of his career punts downed inside the 20 at Central Michigan. For comparison's sake, Maynard has had 32.3% of his career NFL punts downed inside the 20.
For more on the ever-important punting battle and all your Texans insight, be sure to check out Battle Red Blog.