When the Houston Texans took D.J. Swearinger with a second-round pick in last week's NFL Draft, the former University of South Carolina safety was expected to be groomed as a potential replacement for Ed Reed several years down the road.
A hip injury suffered by the nine-time Pro Bowl safety could provide Swearinger with added first-team reps during the Texans' offseason program. Last week, Reed underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair a small labral tear in his hip, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reported. Reed, who signed with the Texans in late-March, is expected to be ready for training camp, according to the Chronicle.
Texans coach Gary Kubiak has a history of providing prominent players recovering from surgery with added rest in camp. Kubiak could do the same with linebacker Brian Cushing, as he returns to the field following season-ending knee surgery last October. If Reed practices sparingly in training camp, Swearinger could split reps with third-year safety Shiloh Keo.
Months before the start of the 2010 regular season, Reed underwent reconstructive surgery on his hip to repair a torn labrum. Following the procedure, Reed said the pain in his hip became progressively worse throughout the 2009 season, as he played through the injury. Reed missed four games in 2009 because of the hip problems.
Reed's three-year, $15 million contract with the Texans, included a $2 million signing bonus. At Reed's introductory press conference he spoke extensively on the importance of taking care of his body, as he enters his 12th season in the NFL.
“I've played through injuries, we've all seen them,” Reed said. “What they say is this game is 90 percent mental and 10 percent physical. Everybody knows father time catches up with you, but when you have the right people around and the right situation you understand what you're doing in your role. You're able to move a certain way throughout a defense.”
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