Texans Smith confident In Foster's healthy return

Smith notes Foster's contract will not prohibit the team from keeping him.

OCTOBER 18: Arian Foster #23 of the Houston Texans rushes for yardage during the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field on October 18, 2015 in Jacksonville, Florida (Getty Images)

Arian Foster is the Houston Texans all-time leading rusher, but he missed the final nine games of the 2015 season after rupturing his Achilles tendon.

The 29-year old running back has played in just 25 of a possible 48 games over the last and many wondered about his future with the Texans.

Thursday at the NFL scouting combine, Texans general manger expressed optimism that Foster would return to full health for the season.

Maybe more importantly, Smith also indicated Foster's contract is not a consideration in regards to his spot on the roster.

Foster is entering the final season of $43.5 million contract that carries an $8.925 million cap charge.

"I’ll tell you this, his salary is not a reason why we will cut him,” Smith said.

"I think we’re in a position that I don’t know that any player is prohibited," Smith added.

"We try to write our contracts in such a way that when we get to the end of contracts, we don’t necessarily have to move players. That’s one of the things that we’ve been doing over the last few years to position ourselves salary cap-wise to be in a place where moving forward we can always have flexibility."

Foster also missed the first three games of the 2015 season after injuring his groin during training camp. 

"I met with Arian a couple weeks ago. He’s doing well," Smith said.

"He was very, very motivated. I thought one of the things that I was so disappointed for him from last year was he probably had his best offseason last year. To see the injuries occur last year was disappointing primarily because I knew how hard he had worked.

"He’s right back at that. He’s got the right mindset. He came in and talked to me a couple weeks ago to make sure that we knew that. I believe him. I believe he’ll bounce back and be fine.”