Multiple media outlets, including the Houston Chronicle, have reported that cornerback Dunta Robinson will not be franchised by the Texans this offseason and that the team will not negotiate with him on a new contract. That would make Robinson an unrestricted free agent on March 5.
No official announcement has been made by the Texans at this time.
Per the Chronicle's John McClain, the Texans already have informed Robinson, their first-round draft pick in 2004, of their decision not to tag him as a franchise player for a second consecutive season. The Texans used their franchise tag on Robinson in 2009, preceding an offseason holdout that lasted through training camp.
Robinson started all 16 games last season, two years after suffering severe knee and hamstring injuries in a 2007 victory at the Oakland Raiders. He is the Texans' all-time interceptions leader with 13 and has started 79 games in six seasons with the team.
"I don't know what's going to happen," Robinson said when asked about his future on Jan. 4, a day after the season ended. "I know I would like to be back next year. That's something that we will have to sit down and discuss. Hopefully, we can work something out."
The Texans have not publicly disclosed their intentions with Robinson. Team owner Bob McNair was asked about the hard-hitting cornerback's contract status during a Feb. 10 press conference.
"We haven't addressed that yet, because right now we're really looking at other free agents," McNair said. "That's something that will be addressed later. We're going to work on free agents right now. Rick Smith will be looking at that and visiting with Gary (Kubiak) and seeing what the situation is."
Smith is in Indianapolis for the NFL Scouting Combine and is scheduled to meet with the media on Friday.