He’ll be 30 years old in August, which increases the chances of injury. But if a team needs a bridge veteran with elite vision who can teach younger players about patience and how to be effective in the passing game, Foster could be that guy.
The Texans save $6.6 million in salary-cap space by releasing Foster, and at a lower salary, he could be a boon for a team. Foster started jogging last month as part of his rehabilitation from a torn Achilles tendon in October. Foster’s surgery was on Nov. 1.
According to a source, Foster is ahead of schedule in his rehab and should be ready in plenty of time for training camp.
Here’s a look at what teams might want him:
If the Bills believe that Foster still has something left in the tank, then adding a layer of veteran insurance in the event of a LeSean McCoy suspension makes sense. However, the Bills are operating with limited cap room -- about $9 million as of Thursday morning -- and Foster would need to accept a deal at or near the veteran minimum salary. He would also need to agree to play in Buffalo, which isn't often an attractive landing spot for veteran free agents. -- Mike Rodak
Certainly, Foster’s injury history would be a concern for the Broncos, but their leading rusher from 2015 -- Ronnie Hillman -- is an unrestricted free agent, and they are expected to seek help in the draft and will take a look in free agency. They don’t have a lot of money to spend on players who aren’t named Von Miller and Brock Osweiler at the moment, and most of their attention overall in free agency will be to try to sign their own players.
But Foster was Broncos coach Gary Kubiak’s running back for five seasons during Kubiak’s tenure as the Texans coach, and Foster’s four seasons with at least 1,200 yards rushing, including a career-best 1,616 yards in 2010, were in Kubiak’s offense with current Broncos offensive coordinator Rick Dennison, also on the Texans’ staff. -- Jeff Legwold
With no healthy, proven running backs under contract, the Jets have to keep an open mind at the position. General manager Mike Maccagnan, a former Texans scouting executive, watched Foster grow up in the Houston organization. Foster’s age and durability are concerns, but the Maccagnan connection makes him a back-burner option in the event they lose Chris Ivory and/or Bilal Powell in free agency. Obviously, a lot depends on Foster’s health and price tag. -- Rich Cimini
The Seahawks’ potential interest in Foster will be all about his health and salary demands. With Marshawn Lynch retiring, the team will rely on Thomas Rawls to carry the load in 2016. But they need a third-down back who can replace Fred Jackson, someone who is a good pass-catcher and reliable in pass protection. In those areas, Foster would fit the bill. And if healthy, he’d obviously be a huge upgrade over Jackson as a ball carrier. Given that the Seahawks have other needs, they’ll likely only be willing to take a flier on Foster if he wants to sign a short-term, relatively inexpensive deal. General manager John Schneider has said the team walks away from 70 to 80 percent of the deals it discusses, but adding Foster is an idea that the Seahawks could at least kick around. -- Sheil Kapadia