Welcome to my first annual update on the Houston Texans. They will be good. Wow, insightful stuff here. OK, why will they be good. To make you happy, I will look at the positions starting with the biggest question mark… the offensive line.
OLINE – The left side is rock solid, Duane Brown is one of the top, if not the top left tackle in the league. Wade Smith is solid. Chris Myers, one of the top centers in the nfl even if he is one of the smallest. He makes up for it with technique. Now for the question mark… the right side and “newcomers” Rashard Butler and Antoine “Gump” Caldwell. Guess what, they’ve been practicing next to each other since they’ve both joined the team on the practice squad. Both played significant time in the actual offense. The most important thing for a zone blocking scheme, communication and familiarity. They both have it. A rookie may push them, but won’t beat them out of the starting lineup. There may be a slight drop off the first few weeks, but it won’t last long. No one on the offense is concerned.
WIDE RECEIVERS – There’s Andre Johnson and …., well Kevin Walter is the number two no matter what. He is too important in the run game. He’s a solid receiver with good hands. The 3-5 spot is a huge question mark, but you shouldn’t exactly worry about it because of another position, the tight end. You say a tight end can’t do what a wide receiver can, that a passing attack can’t be good with just one receiver and some tight ends. Uhhh, check out the New England Patriots. The Texans passing attack will be fine. The play action just kills defenses. So it’s not a huge concern other than it would be nice to see the young receivers step up, especially if Andre goes down.
TIGHT ENDS – I expect alot of 3 tight end formations this season with Owen Daniels and Garrett Graham on the line and James Casey in the backfield. They had enough speed and power to cause some serious match up problems. Graham is the biggest unknown because he played behind Joel Dreessen. Well, he’s built up his body, had good hands and runs solid routes. Someone in this group, OD most likely, will be second on the team in receptions… and Graham or Casey will probably be 4th.
RUNNING BACKS – Arian Foster will be number 3 in receiving. He is an all purpose back who finds seams, has power and speed. He also studies enough film to diagnose blitzes as well as Schaub. He is very good at picking up the blitz. Arian is the top back in the league in this one homer’s opinion. He even will get a little break from time to time because Ben Tate is a very good back. The two communicate on the sidelines as to the best way to attack the other team. They also are competitive as hell and want to better than the other. So it’s quite possible this team could have two 1,000 yard backs. But it’s more likely Foster will get about 2200 yards rushing and receiving and Tate will get about 800.
QUARTERBACKS – no question marks here. Matt Schaub is healthy and entrenched as the starter. He’s a smart QB with an average arm. He will under throw the deep ball some, and could stand to put a little more zip on out patterns. But I’d rather him under throw a bomb and have it caught, than over throw it and lose a possession. TJ Yates is the back up and is a solid number 2. He’s far from perfect, but is much more athletically gifted than Schaub. He also has the knack of being able to make big plays. He will win you more games than he loses.
Next up is the Defense. I’ll post that sometime later when I get in the mood. Here’s a teaser though… the defense will be good. (Wow what a tease, the number two defense will be good again!!!!!)
And since no one reads this post, I am not proof reading it. So punctuation and spelling be damned. Also if I am wrong about anything, it’s because of a typo.