Houston Texans

Stadium: NRG Stadium | Coach: Bill O'Brien
Team RankingOverallRushingPassing
Offense29th116.2 (8th)198.5 (29th)
Defense1st99.7 (12th)201.6 (2nd)
player is injured   news about this player
79Allen, Jeff G6-43061/8/19906Illinois
88Allen, RaShaun TE6-42502/25/19902Southern University
17Anderson, Dres WR6-21907/20/19922Utah
89Anderson, Stephen TE6-22301/30/19932California
96Ankou, Eli DT6-3290//RUCLA
78Austell, Erik C6-3300//RCharleston Southern
39Ballentine, Lonnie SAF6-32254/23/19934Memphis
81Baylis, Evan TE6-6245//ROregon
28Blue, Alfred RB6-22254/27/19914LSU
76Brown, Duane T6-43158/30/198510Virginia Tech
2Carter, Cory P5-9200//RTexas Southern
74Clark, Chris T6-530510/1/19859Southern Mississippi
90Clowney, Jadeveon DE6-52702/14/19934South Carolina
51Cole, Dylan LB6-02205/19/1994RMissouri State
86Conque, Zach TE6-62404/22/1994RStephen F. Austin St.
95Covington, Christian DE6-230510/16/19933Rice
41Cunningham, Zach LB6-323412/12/1994RVanderbilt
56Cushing, Brian ILB6-32551/24/19879Southern California
60Daniel, T.J. DE6-6250//ROregon
70Davenport, Julie'n T6-73181/9/1995RBucknell
31Decoud, Treston CB6-22068/1/1993ROregon State
50Dent, Akeem (FA) OLB6-12509/27/19877Georgia
20Dillon, K.J. SAF6-02005/11/19932West Virginia
23Drummond, Kurtis FS6-12001/29/19923Michigan State
92Dunn, Brandon DT6-23109/5/19922Louisville
34Ervin, Tyler RB5-1018510/7/19932San Jose State
7Fairbairn, Ka'imi K6-01901/29/19942UCLA
87Fiedorowicz, C.J. TE6-526510/22/19914Iowa
27Foreman, D'Onta RB6-12334/24/1996RTexas
61Fuller, Kyle C6-53063/4/1994RBaylor
15Fuller, Will WR6-01804/16/19942Notre Dame
68Giacomini, Breno T6-73189/27/198510Louisville
64Gibson, Laurence T6-63053/19/19911Virginia Tech
69Godin, Matt DE6-62959/30/1993RMichigan
16Gray, Deante' WR5-10174//RTCU
84Griffin, Ryan TE6-62651/11/19905Connecticut
41Grimes, Jonathan (FA) RB5-1021012/21/19895William & Mary
29Hal, Andre FS5-101955/30/19924Vanderbilt
19Hardee, Justin WR6-12002/7/1994RIllinois
97Hatley, Rickey NT6-4270//RMissouri
93Heath, Joel DE6-63006/18/19932Michigan State
18Hill, Shaq WR5-101805/12/1993REastern Washington
10Hopkins, DeAndre WR6-12156/6/19925Clemson
33Hunt, Akeem RB5-102002/22/19933Purdue
25Jackson, Kareem CB5-101854/10/19888Alabama
30Johnson, Kevin CB6-01858/5/19923Wake Forest
37Jones, Bryce DB6-0180//RAkron
24Joseph, Johnathan CB5-111854/16/198412South Carolina
94Kamalu, Ufomba DE6-629511/2/19922Miami (Fla.)
63Lamm, Kendall T6-63106/5/19923Appalachian State
9Lechler, Shane P6-22308/7/197618Texas A&M
47Lee, Eric LB6-32608/6/19941South Florida
65Mancz, Greg C6-43104/23/19923Toledo
66Martin, Nick C6-43004/29/19932Notre Dame
83McCarron, Riley WR5-91856/16/1993RIowa
55McKinney, Benardrick ILB6-426011/19/19923Mississippi State
59Mercilus, Whitney OLB6-42657/21/19906Illinois
13Miller, Braxton WR6-120511/30/19922Ohio State
26Miller, Lamar RB5-102204/25/19916Miami (Fla.)
43Moore, Corey SS6-22001/28/19932Georgia
54Moore, Sio LB6-12455/2/19905Connecticut
21Nelson, Robert DB5-101702/16/19903Arizona State
72Newton, Derek T6-631511/16/19877Arkansas State
8Novak, Nick K6-02008/21/198110Maryland
44Ogunbowale, Dare RB5-11200//RWisconsin
52Peters, Brian LB6-424010/31/19883Northwestern (Ia)
35Pleasant, Eddie DB5-1020012/17/19885Oregon
58Pratt, Dayon LB6-42254/23/1993REast Carolina
53President, Gimel LB6-4275//RIllinois
45Prosch, Jay FB6-12558/21/19924Auburn
77Quessenberry, David T6-53068/24/19903San Jose State
42Rashad, Shakeel LB6-22403/17/19941North Carolina
98Reader, D.J. DE6-33357/1/19942Clemson
22Rice, Denzel SAF6-01963/31/19932Coastal Carolina
38Roberson, Marcus DB6-019110/4/19924Florida
67Ross, Daniel DE6-6325//RNortheast Mississippi CC
3Savage, Tom QB6-42304/26/19904Pittsburgh
57Scarlett, Brennan LB6-42607/31/19932Stanford
62Slade, Chad G6-53155/4/19922Auburn
94Smith, Antonio (FA) DE6-329010/21/198114Oklahoma State
36Smith, Malik CB6-01908/28/1995RSan Diego State
91Still, Devon (FA) DT6-53057/11/19895Penn State
11Strong, Jaelen WR6-22051/25/19943Arizona State
71Su'a-Filo, Xavier G6-43201/1/19914UCLA
14Thompson, Chris WR6-0175//RFlorida
 Virgin, Dee DB5-919410/29/1993RWest Alabama
73Walker, Josh G6-53286/2/19913Middle Tennessee
49Washington, Tony OLB6-42556/1/19922Oregon
91Watkins, Carlos DT6-330912/5/1993RClemson
4Watson, Deshaun QB6-22219/14/1995RClemson
99Watt, J.J. DE6-52953/22/19897Wisconsin
5Weeden, Brandon QB6-423010/14/19836Oklahoma State
46Weeks, Jon LS5-102502/17/19868Baylor
75Wilfork, Vince (FA) NT6-232511/4/198114Miami (Fla.)
50Williams, Avery LB5-102109/2/1994RTemple
82Williams, Wendall WR5-101859/18/19901Cumberland College
Injured Players
 Leonard, Richard (IR) CB5-91709/2/1991RFlorida International
Roster Analysis
TeamOLine Avg. HtOLine Avg. WtDLine Avg. HtDLine Avg. WtAvg. AgeYoungestOldest
Alphabetical Listing
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Position Listing
Benardrick McKinney
McKinney had just one tackle and played 22 of a possible 61 snaps in Houston's 24-17 loss to Tennessee in Week 17.

The Texans were very cautious in how it deployed their regulars as they wanted to be in the best possible health for this week's playoff game against Oakland. McKinney emerged as Houston's leading tackler this season, both overall (129 tackles) and solo (79), and his five sacks ranked third for the team that finished first in defense (301.3 ypg).

Tom Savage
Savage emerged from offseason activities as the starting quarterback, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reports.

That means status quo for Savage who was the putative starter following the 2017 draft when Houston selected Deshaun Watson with their first-round selection. The Texans were impressed by how Watson picked up the system, but head coach Bill O'Brien affirmed that Savage is "ahead in how he functions with the offense." So, Savage enters training camp as the starter, but as O'Brien has said several times, he'll need to earn the No. 1 job every day.

Eli Ankou
No Updates
Andre Hal
Hal (illness) is listed as active for Sunday's game against the Packers.

Hal's illness apparently isn't serious enough to keep him sidelined, so he's slated to start at free safety per usual.

Erik Austell
Austell signed a contract with the Texans on Friday, Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle reports.

Austell was an undrafted free agent out of Charleston Southern who earned FCS All-American honors as a senior. He'll look to secure a role as a reserve offensive lineman.

Chad Slade
No Updates
Bryce Jones
No Updates
Jeff Allen
Allen is looking to return to form this season after a disappointing 2016 campaign, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Allen took a step back in his first season at Houston due to lingering injuries and a position change. However, after undergoing offseason ankle surgery, the 27-year-old is aiming for a bounce back year. "My ankle feels pretty good," Allen noted. "It was more of a cleanup thing. It was something that had been bothering me for a little while." In addition, Allen has spent the offseason changing his diet, which has helped him lose over 20 pounds. All this considered, the veteran is very optimistic for the upcoming season as he looks to bolster the Texans ground game.

Evan Baylis
No Updates
Shaq Hill
No Updates
DeAndre Hopkins
Hopkins remains confident his agent will work out a long-term deal with the Texans, Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle reports. "Those talks are between the Texans and my agent, but this city has embraced me just like my hometown in South Carolina has," said Hopkins. "I love being here. I love playing for this team, great organization."

Hopkins is under contract this season at his fifth-year-option salary of $7.915 million, coming off what was easily the least efficient campaign -- 6.4 yards per target, 12.2 per catch -- of his otherwise impressive career. Brock Osweiler proved far worse than the subpar quarterbacks Hopkins dealt with in previous seasons, finishing last in the league by a wide margin with 5.8 yards per pass attempt. The Texans and Hopkins seem to agree that the 25-year-old wideout was a victim of circumstances last season and probably still has his best football ahead of him. It may still take time to work things out, as Hopkins likely is targeting an extension that compares to the deals signed the past few years by Julio Jones, Demaryius Thomas, Dez Bryant and A.J. Green -- all of whom have contracts for $14-15 million per season with 40-50 percent of the money guaranteed. The Texans may hope to pay him a tick below that rate, though he'd end up making quite a bit more if he were to rebound in 2017 and then hit the open market next offseason. Either way, Hopkins stands to benefit from Osweiler's departure, even though the combination of Tom Savage and Deshaun Watson doesn't seem too promising, at least for this season.

Robert Nelson
Nelson was signed to the Texans from the team's practice squad.

The Texans have some injuries in the secondary and Nelson will provide some depth there if they are shorthanded for Week 6 against the Colts.

Jay Prosch
Prosch (ankle) was a full participant in Friday's practice and will play in Saturday's playoff game against the Raiders.

Prosch missed the Texans' regular season finale with an ankle injury. Having logged just four rushing attempts all season, he is far off the fantasy radar.

Gimel President
No Updates
Braxton Miller
Texans receivers coach John Perry believes Miller has enough quickness and speed to continue playing the slot, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports. "The thing that's really intriguing is that [Miller]'s generally a larger guy than most slot receivers," said Perry. "But he does have that quickness and speed to go along with that. That's something that's really valuable and gives him options to play on the outside and do those things, too. He's fighting to try to get on the field in a lot of different ways."

After running a 4.50 40-yard dash at 6-foot-1, 201 pounds, the former Ohio State quarterback seemed to profile as an outside receiver, though he also displayed excellent agility and quickness by posting top-three marks among wideouts in the three-cone drill, 20-yard shuttle and 60-yard shuttle at the 2016 Combine. The Texans tried to take advantage of that quickness last season by using Miller from the slot in three-wide sets, but his lack of polish was on clear display as he caught only 15 of 28 targets for 99 yards and a score in 10 games. He served as the No. 3 receiver whenever he was healthy, missing two games in September with a hamstring injury and later sitting out the final four weeks with a shoulder sprain. Miller received a clean bill of health in January, giving him a full offseason to solidify his role as the slot receiver in three-wide formations. He doesn't seem to have much competition, if any, and it's possible he could eventually push Will Fuller for the No. 2 spot if last year's first-round pick can't bounce back from a rookie campaign which featured minimal production after Week 5.

C.J. Fiedorowicz
Fiedorowicz did not participate in Tuesday's OTA due to an undisclosed issue, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

The nature of Fiedorowicz's current issue is unclear, but it's unlikely that he's dealing with any sort of severe injury at this point in the offseason. He figures to once again lead the tight end corps in Houston upon his return, but Ryan Griffin may see additional reps while Fiedorowicz watches from the sideline in the short term.

Undisclosed - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Brandon Dunn
Dunn has been waived by the Texans.

Dunn recorded three combined tackles in two games played for the Texans this season.

D'Onta Foreman
Foreman was taken into custody by the University of Texas police department on Sunday and charged with marijuana possession and unlawful carrying of a weapon, Brian Davis of the American-Statesman reports.

With the legal process just beginning, we won't speculate on a possible suspension, but there's a chance the Texans take action once all is said and done. A third-round pick out of Texas, Foreman is expected to compete for the No. 2 running back role behind starter Lamar Miller, although it remains to be seen how Sunday's events will affect his standing.

Tony Washington
Washington (chest) spent the 2016 season on injured reserve.

At the conclusion of the preseason, the 2015 undrafted free agent was waived/injured before getting placed on IR one day later. An unsubstantiated report from the Houston Chronicle on Sept. 8 claimed the Texans and Washington reached an injury settlement as the result of a chest injury, but he in fact remained on injured reserve throughout the campaign. As the offseason progresses, he'll look to compete for a depth role at outside linebacker.

Chest - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Zach Conque
No Updates
K.J. Dillon
Dillon (knee) was held out of practice Tuesday, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Dillon has been rehabbing from the torn ACL that he suffered last season. The team appears to be reluctant to throw him back in the fire just yet. With four months still between now and the regular season, the Texans will likely ease Dillon back into the swing of things.

Knee - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Kendall Lamm
No Updates
Johnathan Joseph
Joseph (calf) was a full participant in practice Thursday.

Joseph was limited at practice Wednesday after he played through his calf injury in Houston's wild-card win over Oakland. He'll be expected to play and start in the Texans' divisional round matchup with New England on Saturday.

Daniel Ross
No Updates
Brennan Scarlett
Scarlett is the leading candidate to replace John Simon as one of Houston's starting outside linebackers, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Scarlett had 13 tackles in seven games last season as a backup and was also a mainstay on special teams. The 23-year-old enters his second season with the Texans after signing as an undrafted free agent out of Stanford in 2015. With so many other weapons on Houston's defense, Scarlett may be sneaky productive while opponents scheme to defend guys like J.J. Watt, Jadeveon Clowney and Whitney Mercilus.

Justin Hardee
No Updates
Joel Heath
Heath (knee) is 100 percent healthy, WCPO's Mike Dyer reports.

Heath went down in the Texans' divisional-round loss to the Patriots last January. While it still isn't certain what specific type of knee injury he was dealing with, the second-year Michigan State product did not require surgery and has been participating in the outset of OTAs.

Rickey Hatley
No Updates
Corey Moore
Moore (concussion) will play Sunday against the Lions.

Moore, the Texans' backup free safety, missed practice Wednesday due to concussion symptoms. However, he has since cleared protocol and will be available to play.

Dylan Cole
No Updates
Kareem Jackson
Jackson scored on a 42-yard interception return during the first quarter of Houston's 24-21 win over Jacksonville on Sunday.

Jackson read the eyes of Jacksonville quarterback Blake Bortles and undercut an out route to give Houston a lead before the offense ever stepped onto the field. He missed some time this season due to a hamstring injury, but has been back three weeks now and registered 11 tackles over the last two games.

Shakeel Rashad
No Updates
Eddie Pleasant
Pleasant has signed a two-year contract with the Texans,Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Pleasant had his best season as a professional in 2015, his fourth professional season. He had his first two interceptions and his first forced fumble, and he set career highs with 36 tackles and six passes defensed. Along with the career-best line, Pleasant played 36.6 percent of the Texans' defensive snaps last season, a career high, and he played 44.6 percent of the team's special teams snaps. Those changes indicate he's steadily getting a larger role on the defense, and his statistical improvement is promising for the coming season. He'll likely see an increased role on defense, but it would be surprising if he suddenly becomes relevant in many IDP leagues.

Sio Moore
The Texans signed Moore on Friday, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Since he was selected in the third round of the 2017 draft, Moore has hopscotched through the league, logging time with four different organizations. Last year included the Colts, Chiefs and Cardinals, with whom he totaled 65 tackles (50 solo), two forced fumbles and one pass defended across eight games (seven starts). With Brian Cushing (undisclosed) and Benardrick McKinney embedded as the starting ILBs in Houston, Moore will likely be contained to special teams duty if he lands a gig by Week 1. However, Moore has shown the ability to rack up tackles when given the opportunity.

Brian Peters
Peters (quadriceps) will play Monday night in Oakland.

Peters hasn't seen game action since Week 5, but is now healthy to play. He projects to assume a backup role at inside linebacker.

Kurtis Drummond
Drummond was placed on injured reserve with a leg injury, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Drummond hurt his leg during preseason Week 1 against San Francisco.

Undisclosed - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Brian Cushing
Cushing (shoulder) is still recovering from offseason shoulder surgery, Alex Del Barrio of CBS Houston reports.

Cushing was given days off during OTAs as he's still working his way back from January shoulder surgery. Expect the Texans to continue to be cautious with their starting linebacker until the regular season rolls around.

Shoulder - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
RaShaun Allen
The Seahawks have signed 11 players to future contracts, the team announced Wednesday.

Running back Demitrius Bronson, wide receiver Douglas McNeil, tight end RaShaun Allen, tackle Justin Renfrow, guards Nate Isles and Drew Nowak, defensive ends Ryan Robinson and Julius Warmsley, defensive tackle Jimmy Staten, linebacker Mike Zimmer and safety Dion Bailey will look to compete for spots on the final 53-man roster in 2015.

Akeem Hunt
Hunt caught two of two targets for 28 yards and added a six-yard run in Saturday's win over the Bengals.

A week after a two-fumble afternoon, Hunt didn't see an uptick in usage despite starter Lamar Miller on the shelf - Alfred Blue picking up the majority of the load. Hunt has yet to score this season and hasn't reached double-digit offensive snaps since Week 11, but he might be in line for an uptick in usage as the season ends. Miller is still battling a bum ankle and, with their seed set, Houston might be inclined to rest Miller and Blue for the playoffs.

Alfred Blue
The Texans expect rookie third-round selection D'Onta Foreman to challenge Blue for the No. 2 spot on the depth chart, ESPN.com's Sarah Barshop reports.

Blue served as Lamar Miller's top backup last season, taking 100 carries for 420 yards and a touchdown but adding only 12 catches for 40 yards on 16 targets. It was only a matter of time before the Texans sought an upgrade, as Blue doesn't offer much in the passing game and isn't particularly explosive (career 3.6 YPC). Foreman only caught seven passes last season at The University of Texas, but he rushed for over 2,000 yards at a clip of 6.3 per carry, and then ran a 4.45 40-yard dash at 233 pounds at the Combine. Blue could fall all the way off the roster if he doesn't beat out Foreman for the No. 2 job, as the Texans presumably want to keep at least one running back besides Miller that can stay on the field for passing downs. Akeem Hunt, 2016 fourth-rounder Tyler Ervin and undrafted rookie Dare Ogunbowale are in the mix to earn roster spots.

Nick Novak
Novak agreed to re-sign with the Texans on Tuesday, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Novak came through with what may have been a career-best season in 2016, converting a franchise-record 35 field goals for a Texans team that struggled to find the end zone. While Novak hasn't shown much prowess from distance in his career, he turned the corner last season, nailing 4-of-7 attempts from 50 yards or longer. The terms of his new contract with the Texans aren't yet known, but given that Novak is set to turn 36 in August, his deal likely doesn't include much guaranteed money.

Xavier Su'a-Filo
No Updates
Derek Newton
Newton (knee) is a candidate to miss the entire 2017 season after tearing patellar tendons in both of his knees during Week 7 of his 2016 campaign, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Newton was placed on the PUP list last week; meanwhile, the Texans signed 31-year-old Breno Giacomini on Tuesday to provide a veteran option at right tackle. The Texans should have a better read on Newton's health outlook once training camp arrives, but at this time, there's a good possibility he doesn't suit up in 2017.

Knee - Physically Unable to Perform
Duane Brown
Brown is skipping the Texans' mandatory minicamp this week due to an ongoing contract dispute, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Brown will be subject to fines totaling over $80K if his absence continues throughout the week, which is the expected outcome at this point. Brown has two years left on a six-year deal, but wants to renegotiate the contract before he turns 32 in August. Expect Brown to hold out until talks improve with the Texans.

Dayon Pratt
No Updates
Greg Mancz
No Updates
Kyle Fuller
No Updates
Josh Walker
No Updates
Christian Covington
Covington (groin) is active for Sunday's Week 2 tilt with Kansas City, BJ Kissel of Chiefs.com reports.

Covington's availability was in some question after he didn't practice Friday and suited up in only a limited capacity Thursday, but it appears he's ready to go. He's slated to serve as the starter at the end spot opposite J.J. Watt, though he doesn't figure to offer much IDP utility.

Jon Weeks
No Updates
Matt Godin
No Updates
Avery Williams
No Updates
Treston Decoud
Decoud could play safety due to his size and willingness to hit and is expected be a core special-teams contributor during his rookie season, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

The Texans took a hit in the secondary in the offseason, losing safety Quintin Demps and cornerback A.J. Bouye to free agency. They could use a combo guy to back up at both positions. Decoud's physical nature and length make him an interesting candidate but he needs to improve technique at cornerback.

Marcus Roberson
Roberson was claimed off waivers by the Texans, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Roberson was snapped up the Texans one day after he was released by Buffalo. With the free-agent losses of A.J. Bouye (Jaguars) and Quintin Demps (Bears), the Texans have added a body to compete for playing time in the secondary. Houston created room on its 90-man offseason roster by placing tackle Derek Newton on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list.

Nick Martin
Martin (ankle) was an active participant at OTAs Tuesday, Deepi Sidhu of the team's official site reports.

Martin missed all of last season with a knee injury. The 2016 second round pick is looking to make an impact for the Texans in his first season back. Assuming he steers clear of any setbacks, Martin should be in line for a starting job along to offensive front.

Dres Anderson
The Texans signed Anderson on Friday, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

After working out for the team Friday, Anderson was granted an opportunity from the third organization of his career. He's spent time on the 49ers' and Bears' practice squads, yet the active roster eluded him on both occasions. Anderson will attempt to impress with what remains of Houston's offseason program and hope it's enough to stick around for training camp.

Eric Lee
No Updates
Lamar Miller
Miller's workload is something the Texans hope to manage better during the 2017 season, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Miller missed Houston's final two regular season games due to shoulder, ankle and rib injuries, which came after he racked up a career-high 299 touches through just 14 games. While an increased workload was part of what made Miller's fantasy stock more appealing with the Texans than it previously was with the Dolphins, such exertion took its toll over the course of the campaign. Admittedly, Houston's at times horrid passing game left little alternative to calling Miller's number, so along with looking to improve through the air this year, the team will also hope monitoring Miller's duties will produce better results in the long haul.

Jaelen Strong
Strong (ankle) has been placed on injured reserve, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Strong has been sidelined since spraining his ankle in late October, and his season will now come to an end. He's appeared in just 18 games throughout the first two years of his career, and caught 28 total passes on 48 targets for 292 yards and three touchdowns, but no scores in 2016.

Ankle - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Deshaun Watson
Watson impressed in offseason practices but still has a lot of ground to gain in the team's quarterback competition, NFL.com's Max Meyer reports. "We put a lot on [Watson's] plate during the spring, and he handled it very well," coach Bill O'Brien said. "He made mistakes, and he corrected them. You don't see him make the same mistake twice. He can do a lot of things. He can operate our running game and in our passing game. He's got a lot of athleticism. I don't think we'll have to limit him. Training camp and preseason games will be a big test."

Although the Texans coaching staff has been singing the praises of fellow QB Tom Savage this offseason, Watson appears to be impressing as well. O'Brien qualified the Clemson product as being "wise beyond his years" and also said he's adjusting nicely to the challenges that have been put on Watson's plate, which is a very encouraging sign given the complexity of the O'Brien's offensive system. However, the coach admitted that Watson is "not nearly where he needs to be to be a full-time starter in this league," so it seems the rookie will need to make significant strides in advance of Week 1 in order to earn the starting gig.

Zach Cunningham
Cunningham is seen as a versatile linebacker that can play both inside and outside, according to Houston head coach Bill O'Brien, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports. "Versatility is key for us. Zach was a very productive tackler at Vanderbilt," said O'Brien.

Cunningham sees himself as an inside linebacker but he'll need to get bigger to man that spot in the NFL. O'Brien feels he can play on special teams immediately and serve as depth at inside linebacker, where he can be groomed by veteran Brian Cushing for an eventual starting job alongside Bernardrick McKinney. Athleticism is Cunningham's greatest asset. He covers ground, is adept at pursuing, and could probably step in right away as a third-down backer.

Wendall Williams
Williams was active for Sundays game against the Jaguars and caught two of three targets for 34 yards in Houston's 21-20 win in Week 15.

Williams was promoted to the active roster from the practice squad earlier in the week and was pressed into duty. The Texans had a new look passing attack Sunday after head coach Bill O'Brien yanked an ineffective Brock Osweiler for Tom Savage. The change resulted in a different targret distribution, which included getting some balls to Williams. It's unknown at this point if O'Brien will keep Savage as the starter, but if he does, Williams could sneak in as the third wideout ahead of Keith Mumphery

Richard Leonard
Hamstring - Injured Reserve
Devon Still
Still, who underwent Lisfranc surgery in October, is nearing full health, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports.

Still appeared in just three games with the Texans throughout the 2016 season, notching three tackles before suffering the foot injury. The former second-rounder is no longer with Houston but could have several options elsewhere upon his return to full health.

Ryan Griffin
Griffin signed a three-year deal with the Texans on Saturday, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reports.

After catching 49 total passes in his first three seasons, Griffin blew up with 50 grabs in 2016, racking up 442 yards and two touchdowns. He and C.J. Fiedorowicz comprise a promising tight end corps for the Texans. Additionally, Griffin's return will be a significant road block for Stephen Anderson, who saw just 130 snaps as a rookie in 2016.

Dare Ogunbowale
No Updates
Ka'imi Fairbairn
Fairbairn has been placed on injured reserve, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Fairbairn was attempting to usurp the placekicking job from Nick Novak, but hadn't played in preseason Week 2 or 3 due to the injury. They like his potential and want to evaluate him as a future kicking option.

Quadriceps - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Chris Clark
Shoulder - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
No Updates
T.J. Daniel
No Updates
Cory Carter
No Updates
Jadeveon Clowney
Clowney is healthy after dealing with a sore ankle in OTAs, John McClain of The Houston Chronicle reports.

Clowney -- who has dealt with more than his fair share of health issues since arriving in the NFL -- underwent arthroscopic knee surgery in January before hurting his ankle in OTAs. Fortunately, it seems he's recovered on both fronts and should open training camp without any limitations.

Dee Virgin
No Updates
Antonio Smith
Smith (hip) was a full participant at Thursday's practice.

Smith was held out of practice entirely on Wednesday but he appears to be recovered now and isn't expected to miss more time due to the injury.

Will Fuller
Fuller focused on getting stronger during the offseason to improve his tackle-breaking and blocking abilities, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Fuller is coming off a rookie campaign that included 47 catches on 92 targets for 635 yards and two touchdowns. While that production was decent for a first-year player, and Fuller trailed only star teammate DeAndre Hopkins in yards, the Texans expect more from their 2016 first-rounder in Year 2. First and foremost, they want Fuller to cut down on his amount of drops, something that plagued him last season. From there, Houston hopes the speedy Fuller can be more elusive after the catch, where some added strength should benefit him this term.

Brandon Weeden
Weeden will backup quarterback Brock Osweiler for Saturday's wild-card playoff game against Oakland.

The Texans have declared Tom Savage out for the playoff game, so Weeden becomes active for the just third time this season. No knock on Weeden, but Osweiler would have to be hurt or play awfully for Houston coach Bill O'Brien to make a switch.

Laurence Gibson
No Updates
Vince Wilfork
Texans general manager Rick Smith expects Wilfork to retire this offseason, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Wilfork is currently an unrestricted free agent after spending the past two seasons with the Texans. At 35 years old and with 13 NFL seasons in the books, Wilfork is obviously coming to the end of his playing career. While the five-time Pro Bowler said last month he's in no rush to make a decision, Smith's expectation echoes the sentiment that Wilfork has played his final snap.

D.J. Reader
The Texans have "no concerns" that Reader will be able to replace Vince Wilfork at nose tackle, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

The Texans' 2016 fifth-round pick who was viewed as more of a rotational lineman coming out of Clemson, Reader started seven games in his rookie season and proved sufficiently capable of occupying double teams and clogging up the trenches at the professional level. While he finished the year with only 22 tackles and one sack across 16 appearances, Reader seems to be a lock to improve upon his 40-percent snap count from a season ago and, in turn, should have more of an opportunity to rack up the counting stats in his sophomore campaign.

Stephen Anderson
Anderson caught his lone target for eight yards in Houston's 21-13 loss to San Diego in Week 12.

While Houston's tight ends have been productive this season, there's not enough targets for three of them, so Anderson will have to settle for limited looks after C.J. Fiedorowicz and Ryan Griffin get attention. Anderson has caught all five balls thrown his way over the past four weeks.

Kevin Johnson
Johnson (foot) will not participate in the Texans' mandatory minicamp this week, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Johnson, who missed a majority of the 2016 season due to a broken bone in his foot, figures to be relied upon as a potential replacement for fellow cornerback A.J. Bouye. Johnson is on track to be ready for training camp in late July, but for now Johnathan Joseph and Kareem Jackson will continue to lead the way at cornerback.

Foot - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Jonathan Grimes
Grimes rushed two times for 11 yards and added 43 yards receiving on four catches in Houston's 34-16 loss to New England in Saturday's division-round playoff game.

Grimes' 54 yards from scrimmage were the third highest on the team behind Lamar Miller (89 yards) and DeAndre Hopkins (65). He played a total of 26 snaps over Houston's two playoff games, getting more run on offense than Alfred Blue. He's spent all or parts of the last five seasons with Houston, so he's a known commodity who understands the system. Whether that's enough for Houston to bring him back for 2017 is open to question. They have other in-house options who come cheaper -- 2016 third-round draft pick Tyler Ervin and exclusive-rights free agent Akeem Hunt.

Julie'n Davenport
Davenport and the Texans have agreed to terms on a four-year deal, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

As a two-year captain in college who scored 34 on the Wonderlic exam, the 6-foot-7 Davenport has the smarts and leadership skills coveted by any NFL team. The downside is the level of competition he faced while at Bucknell in the Patriot League. If Davenport is quick to assimilate, the fourth-round draft pick will become a regular in the Texans' tackle rotation, as Derek Newton (knees) is not expected to play in 2017.

Tyler Ervin
Ervin has a chance to be a third-down back and handle both return duties in 2017, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reports.

In order to get that kind of responsibility, Ervin will need to improve his ball security which became an issue during his rookie season in 2016. He fumbled three times and lost two during the regular season, then fumbled twice in the playoff-win over Oakland. However, Ervin's performance during organized team activities looked very much like a player ready to make a leap in his second season. If the Texans are serious about preserving starting running back Lamar Miller, there will be touches available for a player like Ervin.

Chris Thompson
Thompson signed with the Texans on Tuesday, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Thompson, who went undrafted in April, recorded just nine catches during his four-year career at Florida, where he primarily served as the team's kick returner. He'll look to showcase his speed and versatility throughout the offseason as he attempts to win a roster spot with Houston, but he likely won't be a threat to see targets in the passing game if he makes the squad.

Breno Giacomini
Giacomini (back) was signed by the Texans on Tuesday, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

Giacomini, who was released by the Jets in February, will add depth at right tackle for the Texans in 2017. The 10-year vet underwent back surgery following the 2016 season, so he figures to be somewhat limited throughout the offseason.

Back - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Lonnie Ballentine
Ballentine (groin) was placed on IR Saturday, Mark Berman of Fox 26 Houston reports.

Ballentine began the season on the PUP list due to a knee injury and suffered his groin injury just a few games after being activated. He'll finish the year with just two games played.

Groin - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Riley McCarron
No Updates
Shane Lechler
No Updates
Akeem Dent
Dent has been cleared from the league's concussion protocol.

Dent will be available for Week 1 against the Bears. He'll back up at inside linebacker, giving Brian Cushing and/or Benardrick McKinney a breather.

David Quessenberry
Quessenberry (illness) returned to practice this week, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Quessenberry rejoined his teammates after a three-year battle with cancer. While he's still not in game shape, for good reason, the offensive lineman has been making progress. "We're in unchartered territory. But I feel great and it will be very soon where I can play," Quessenberry noted. "Look for more updates to come as training camp nears.

Illness - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Whitney Mercilus
Mercilus had a sack, three quarterback hits, two tackles and a pass defensed in Houston's 34-16 loss to New England in Saturday's AFC division-round playoff game.

Mercilus, who had two sacks in last week's win over Oakland, now has six sacks in three postseason games. He and Jadeveon Clowney were quite active Saturday, harassing New England quarterback Tom Brady all night as the Texans defense made this game tight until mid-way through the fourth quarter. Mercilus returns next season after leading Houston with 7.5 sacks over 15 regular-season games. With a healthy J.J. Watt (back) occupying blockers next season, Mercilus will be in a good position to generate a greater amount of sacks. He had 12 in 2015 when Watt was healthy.

Deante' Gray
Gray is expected to be out until training camp with a Grade 2 partially torn hamstring, Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle reports.

Gray signed with the Texans after going undrafted in April. The injury is a setback that could cause him to fall behind in his competition with Chris Thompson and Wendall Williams for what might only be one roster spot.

Hamstring - Questionable for Week 1 vs. Jacksonville
Malik Smith
No Updates
Denzel Rice
Rice was promoted to the Texans' active roster Saturday.

Rice was signed to the team's practice squad in mid-October, but will now have a chance to prove himself on a much bigger stage. He'll provide depth for the Texans' cornerback unit.

J.J. Watt
Watt (back) passed a team-mandated "Return to Play" protocol and has been participating in OTAs without any physical limitations, Patrick Starr of Scout.com reports.

Watt originally underwent back surgery last July, but perhaps rushed back too soon considering he lasted just three weeks into the 2016 season before aggravating the injury. He ended up requiring a second surgery in September that resulted in him being shut him down for the remainder of the season. Relative to the first operation, Watt has been afforded plenty of time to recover this time around and has progressed in his rehab without any known setbacks. As it stands, the Texans reportedly have no plans to limit Watt's snaps in 2017 and are preparing for the three-time Defensive Player of the Year to take on his usual three-down role.

Ufomba Kamalu
Kamalu has been promoted to the Texans' 53-man roster from the practice squad, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Kamalu has been working out at outside linebacker since signing with Houston and will serve as insurance in Sunday's road game at San Diego after the team ruled starting John Simon out due to a chest injury. Kamalu is a 6-foot-6, 295-pound undrafted free agent from the University of Miami.

Carlos Watkins
Watkins could be part of the rotation at nose tackle, where snaps will be available following the expected retirement of Vince Wilfork, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Watkins, selected in the fourth round (142nd overall) of the 2017 NFL Draft, played both nose tackle and defensive tackle at Clemson, where his quickness produced eye-popping sack totals from the interior defensive line. With the Texans, he'll be deployed as a run-stopper, meaning he'll need to add strength over the course of the summer.


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