Joe Mays, Houston Texans reportedly strike one-year contract

Joe Mays wasn't out of work for long. And Matt Schaub won't have to look over his shoulder.

The Texans signed Mays to a one-year, $1 million contract that includes a $285,000 signing bonus, the Houston Chronicle reported Monday, less than one week after the linebacker was released by the Denver Broncos.

The sixth-year pro will add valuable depth behind starters Brian Cushing and Darryl Sharpton in the Texans' 3-4 defense, but fans still might remember Mays for his illegal hit that took off Schaub's helmet -- and a small piece of the quarterback's ear, too.

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Schaub told reporters Monday that he didn't mind if the Texans signed Mays, who received a one-game suspension and a $50,000 fine for the hit.

"It's just a physical, hard-nosed game, and he's a physical player," Schaub said. "It's just part of football, and I don't fault him for that. ... It's definitely water under the bridge."

The Broncos cut Mays after he started 21 games for them over three seasons. His 2012 season was cut short by a fractured fibula.

Mays, 28, was selected by the Philadelphia Eagles in the sixth round of the 2008 draft after a standout career at North Dakota State. He started one game for the Eagles over two seasons.

Mays visited the Washington Redskins on Saturday but left without a deal.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.