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Nick Caserio: Releasing Whitney Mercilus gives others a chance to perform

Mike Florio and Charean Williams look back on Week 6 of the NFL season with a round of Fill in the Blank.

The Texans released defensive end Whitney Mercilus on Tuesday in a move that could give the veteran a chance to hook up with a contending team while Houston continues a year that appears destined to end with a losing record.

That was the outlook heading into the season and the 1-5 start to the year has done nothing to suggest that better days are ahead for the Texans. That makes player development a key for the rest of the year and General Manager Nick Caserio said that was the driving factor behind Mercilus’ release.

Caserio pointed to players like Jonathan Greenard, DeMarcus Walker, Jacob Walker, and Charles Omenihu as those who could benefit from more playing time.

“It gives some other players maybe another opportunity to go out there and play and perform,” Caserio said, via the team’s website. “We’ve had some players early in the season, JG, D-Walk, Jacob Martin, some other guys. Charles has played a little bit earlier. This presents opportunities for some other players, so the door’s open right now.”

Greenard was inactive for the first two games of the year, but has four sacks in the last four weeks and looks like the team’s top pass rusher with Mercilus gone.