2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Texans may turn eye toward offense

By CHRIS DUNCAN - AP Sports Writer
    2013-04-23 14:39

HOUSTON (AP) - The Houston Texans have loaded up their defense through the draft in recent years. It seems like a good time for the Texans to turn their eyes toward offensive help, particularly a big-play receiver to pair alongside All Pro Andre Johnson.

The Texans have the 27th overall pick in the first round Thursday night. Houston has been looking for a suitable complement for Johnson for years, and the missing component was obvious again last year. The Texans ranked 11th in pass offense (239.4 yards per game) and had only 46 receptions covering at least 20 yards, half of them by Johnson.

Last year, Houston picked DeVier Posey (Ohio State) in the third round and Keshawn Martin (Michigan State) in the fourth. Martin settled into a return role, while Posey took most of the season to blossom. Posey had three catches in the playoff loss, but tore his left Achilles tendon and is likely to miss much of the 2013 campaign.

The Texans cut dependable Kevin Walter and didn't get enough production out of Lestar Jean, an undrafted free agent in 2011. Johnson, who'll be 32 when the season begins, says he's ``all in'' for adding a first-round receiver because a team can never have too many weapons.

``I don't have a problem with having more help,'' said Johnson, the third overall pick in 2003. ``It just makes your team more explosive, makes your team much better. The injury to Posey really hurt us, but I think we can get another guy and with him, Keshawn and Lestar, it'd probably the best group here since I've been here.''

Houston has nine picks overall this year, two of them compensatory.

They could have plenty of receivers to choose from, including Clemson's DeAndre Hopkins, California's Keenan Allen and Tennessee's Justin Hunter. Hopkins had 82 catches for 1,405 yards and 18 touchdowns in 2012. Allen is skipping his senior season to enter the draft and finished his career as the school's all-time leader with 205 receptions. Hunter had 73 catches for 1,083 yards for the Vols last season.

The Texans' last five first-round picks have moved into key roles, including All-Pro selections Duane Brown and Brian Cushing and 2012 defensive player of the year J.J. Watt. Linebacker Brooks Reed (second round, 2011), nose tackle Earl Mitchell (third round, 2010) and linebacker Darryl Sharpton (fourth round, 2010) have also taken over starting roles.

``The key is that we pick the best player,'' coach Gary Kubiak said. ``I know that's cliche, but if you panic because you've got a need here or there, you may make a mistake. We need to pick the best players available to our team, put them in and go from there. We've got certain spots we can improve upon very quickly, but you can't push the envelope, so to speak.''

The Texans could also use help on the offensive line and in the linebacker corps.

Houston retooled the right side of the line last year after cutting tackle Eric Winston and letting guard Mike Brisiel go in free agency. Derek Newton, a seventh-round pick in 2011, won the right tackle job from Rashad Butler in the preseason, and was rotating with veteran Ryan Harris by the end of the season. Rookies Brandon Brooks (third round, 2012) and Ben Jones (fourth round, 2012) shared time at guard with veteran Antoine Caldwell, who missed time last year with a hamstring injury.

Smith expects Newton, Brooks and Jones to make leaps in progress in 2013.

``Obviously, I think we got some real benefit from last year with the young guys being able to play the way that they did,'' Smith said.

Cushing tore his left anterior cruciate ligament in Week 5, and the Texans' defense was never quite as good without him. The Texans re-signed Tim Dobbins, who filled in for Cushing, but outside linebacker and 2011 sacks leader Connor Barwin signed with Philadelphia in free agency.

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Pierre ThomasOct 30 07:22p

New Orleans Saints RBs Khiry Robinson (forearm) and Pierre Thomas (shoulder) are both inactive in Week 9 against the Carolina Panthers Thursday, Oct. 30.

David HawthorneOct 30 07:12p

The New Orleans Saints have declared LB Austin Johnson, LB David Hawthorne, C Jonathan Goodwin, RB Khiry Robinson, WR Nick Toon, RB Pierre Thomas, CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste inactive for Week 9.

Amini SilatoluOct 30 07:12p

The Carolina Panthers have declared OG Amini Silatolu, CB Bene Benwikere, OT Byron Bell, RB Fozzy Whittaker, WR Philly Brown, FS Thomas DeCoud, OG Trai Turner inactive for Week 9.

Brandon BrownerOct 30 04:32p

New England Patriots DT Alan Branch (non-injury related) and DE Chandler Jones (hip) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. S Nate Ebner (finger), DL Dominique Easley (knee), OL Cameron [ More ]

Brandon ThompsonOct 30 04:22p

Cincinnati Bengals CB Darqueze Dennard (hamstring), LB Rey Maualuga (hamstring) and OG Kevin Zeitler (calf) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. DT Domata Peko (toe) and OT Andre Smith [ More ]

Dwight FreeneyOct 30 04:22p

San Diego Chargers LB Manti Te'o (foot), CB Jason Verrett (shoulder) and S Jahleel Addae (concussion) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. LB Jeremiah Attaochu (hamstring) was limited. CB [ More ]

Donald BrownOct 30 04:12p

San Diego Chargers RB Donald Brown (concussion) practiced fully Thursday, Oct. 30.

Terrell SuggsOct 30 04:02p

Baltimore Ravens WR Michael Campanaro (thigh), CB Jimmy Smith (foot) and LB Terrell Suggs (neck) all did not participate in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. OG Marshal Yanda (knee) [ More ]

Brett KeiselOct 30 03:52p

Pittsburgh Steelers DE Brett Keisel (non-injury), SS Troy Polamalu (non-injury) and SS Ross Ventrone (hamstring) did not participate in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. CB Ike Taylor (forearm) and FS [ More ]

Bruce CarterOct 30 03:22p

Dallas Cowboys LB Bruce Carter (finger) suffered a broken ring finger during practice Thursday, Oct. 30, but expects to play in Week 9. He will wear a splint on his finger for protection.

Cullen JenkinsOct 30 03:12p

New York Giants DT Cullen Jenkins (calf) did not participate in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (back, hamstring) and P Steve Weatherford (ankle) were both limited in practice.

Brandon BoykinOct 30 03:12p

Philadelphia Eagles FS Nate Allen (hamstring) did not participate in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. TE Brent Celek (back) and WR Brad Smith (groin) were both limited in practice. CB [ More ]

D'Qwell JacksonOct 30 03:12p

Indianapolis Colts LB D'Qwell Jackson (toe), DT Arthur Jones (ankle), LB Erik Walden (quadriceps) and LB Josh McNary (ankle) did not participate in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. CB Vontae [ More ]

Rashad JenningsOct 30 02:42p

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (knee) said he is on track in terms of his rehab, but there is no timetable for his return. Jennings said he has [ More ]

Jordan CameronOct 30 02:32p

Cleveland Browns TE Jordan Cameron (concussion) did not participate in practice Thursday, Oct. 30.

Anthony CollinsOct 30 02:32p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers OT Oniel Cousins is working at left tackle with the first-team offense during practice Thursday, Oct. 30, because OT Anthony Collins (foot) is sitting out practice.

Doug MartinOct 30 02:22p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Doug Martin (ankle) is not participating in practice Thursday, Oct. 30.

Jason VerrettOct 30 01:52p

San Diego Chargers CB Jason Verrett (shoulder) is expected to miss two to three weeks with a torn labrum, according to two sources.

DeAngelo WilliamsOct 30 01:52p

Carolina Panthers RB DeAngelo Williams (ankle) will start the team's Week 9 game against the New Orleans Saints Thursday, Oct. 30, according to head coach Ron Rivera.

R. Griffin IIIOct 30 01:42p

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III (ankle) received most of the work with the first-team offense during practice Thursday, Oct. 30, and will start in Week 9 if he [ More ]

Jaylen WatkinsOct 30 01:32p

Philadelphia Eagles SS Earl Wolff, FS Chris Maragos and CB Jaylen Watkins could be options to start at safety if FS Nate Allen (hamstring) is not able to play in Week 9.

Giovani BernardOct 30 01:22p

Cincinnati Bengals RB Giovani Bernard (hip, shoulder) did not participate in practice Thursday, Oct. 30.

Tony RomoOct 30 01:02p

Dallas Cowboys QB Tony Romo (back) didn't take part in the walk-through Thursday, Oct. 30, and will not practice with the team. However, head coach Jason Garrett remains hopeful [ More ]

Trent RichardsonOct 30 12:42p

Indianapolis Colts RB Trent Richardson (hamstring) is participating in practice Thursday, Oct. 30.

Reggie WayneOct 30 12:42p

Indianapolis Colts WR Reggie Wayne (elbow) is not participating in practice Thursday, Oct. 30.

Tony RomoOct 30 12:22p

Dallas Cowboys QB Tony Romo's (back) status is making head coach Jason Garrett feel optimistic about his availability for Week 9.

Dallas ThomasOct 30 11:43a

Miami Dolphins OG Dallas Thomas would be the most likely candidate to start at left guard if OG Daryn Colledge (illness) is not able to play in Week 9.

Rashad JenningsOct 30 11:12a

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (knee) has been ruled out for Week 9.

Phil BatesOct 30 10:52a

The Cleveland Browns signed free-agent WR Phil Bates (Seahawks) to the practice squad and released CB Marcus Cromartie Thursday, Oct. 30.

Charles SimsOct 30 10:13a

Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Charles Sims could have 10 or more touches in Week 9, in the opinion of beat writer Greg Auman.

Ryan MathewsOct 30 09:52a

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews (knee) is likely to sit out of the Week 9 game and return after the Week 10 bye.

Dennis PittaOct 30 09:52a

Baltimore Ravens TE Dennis Pitta (hip) may never be able to play football again after two surgeries on a fractured and dislocated hip in as many seasons.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group