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Former Denver Broncos and Houston Texan wide receiver Demaryius Thomas talks to the Texan coaches on the sidelines during the first quarter against Denver at Mile High Stadium on Sunday. Thomas had three receptions during the first half against his former team. Thomas was traded to Houston last week

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HOUSTON (AP) — The Houston Texans have released veteran wide receiver Demaryius Thomas, whose 2018 season ended prematurely when he tore his left Achilles tendon.

Thomas played seven games for Houston last season, making 23 receptions for 275 yards and two touchdowns. He was acquired in October from Denver for a fourth-round draft pick to fill in after Will Fuller tore a knee ligament. The Texans and Broncos also switched seventh-round selections for this year's draft.

Thomas talked about his future the day after Houston's season ended with a loss to the Colts in the wild-card game last month and said he hopes to play again after he recovers from his injury.

"I still can play, man," he said. "I'm not even thinking about retirement."

Thomas knows that the rehabilitation from this injury is difficult after he tore his right Achilles tendon several years ago.

"I tore my right one so I've been through this before," he said. "My right one was six months, but I was 23 then, so we'll see this time."

The injury occurred in Houston's next-to-last game. He would have made $14 million in the upcoming season, the last of his contract signed with the Broncos.

For his nine pro seasons, Thomas has 688 catches for 9,330 yards with 62 touchdowns. He has made four Pro Bowls and won the 2015 NFL title with the Broncos. The 31-year-old was a first-round pick by the Broncos in 2010 and spent his entire career there before last year's trade. He's the second-leading receiver in Broncos history with 9,055 yards and 60 touchdown receptions.

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