The Houston Texans were 12-4 in 2012 and felt they were one piece away from doing special things this year.

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Evident in the three-year, $15-million contract ($5 million guaranteed) that the Texans gave long-time Ravens safety Ed Reed, they felt the future Hall of Famer was that missing link.

After having a second hip operation this off-season (first was in 2010), Reed missed the initial two games of the season. While he played in the last seven games, he was virtually ineffective.

“It’s pretty clear now that the second hip surgery, if he had any athletic ability remaining, robbed him of that,” said Rich Lord, afternoon drive host on SportsRadio 610 in Houston and sideline reporter of the Texans Radio Network.

AUDIO: Rich Lord of Texans Radio with Armen Williams

Reed was cut by the Texans on Wednesday, rounding out to about a $5.4 million check he’ll get from Houston, after saying last Sunday that his team was “outplayed and outcoached” in a loss to the Cardinals.

One thing that’s evident with Reed’s time in Houston is that his athletic ability has diminished. How much so? A lot, according to Lord.

“He was out of position most often", said Lord, with Armen Williams on Thursday afternoon. “He was getting beat on deep patterns; he doesn’t have the ability to cover any more. The hip has really robbed  him of his maneuverability on the field. Two games ago they demoted him and played him only in the dime packages.”

In the most recent game, the highly touted Reed was demoted to special teams with the Texans.

It will be interesting to see how the Jets feel they can use the one-time Ravens franchise player.