Disaster averted. A day after Texans running back Arian Foster left practice with a strained right calf, coach Gary Kubiak says one of his best offensive weapons will be on crutches for a couple days but is "going to be fine."
That's certainly good news for the defending AFC South champs, but what Kubiak describes as a "pretty good calf strain" will keep Foster on the shelf till training camp, reports the Houston Chronicle's John McClain.
In the meantime, backup Ben Tate will see more work.
“Ben's gonna get a lot more reps,” Kubiak said. “He'll be our bell cow the rest of the OTAs and at minicamp.”
Tate missed five games last season, rushing the ball just 65 times for 279 yards. In 2011, however, the former Auburn star split carries with Foster and totaled 942 yards, averaging 5.4 yards per touch.
Foster, meanwhile, has averaged 319 carries per season since 2010, when he led the league in rushing with 1,616 yards. In 2012, he had a career-high 351 rushes for 1,424 yards.
Last August, months after Foster signed a five-year, $43.5 million contract, Tate spoke about his role in the Texans' offense.
“I'm going to keep riding the wave, working hard every single day to get better,” Tate said at the time. “I feel like I'm one of the better running backs in the league right now, definitely [in the] top 10. Adrian's getting paid the big bucks, but you know what? My time is coming."
It's just OTAs and minicamp, but maybe Tate's time is here.