Fuller (sports hernia) has resumed working out, Drew Dougherty of the Texans' official site reports. The typical rehab timeline for sports hernia surgery should allow Fuller to return to full strength long before NFL teams actually are able to practice. He had the procedure in mid-to-late January, back when he was still viewed as second fiddle to DeAndre Hopkins in the Houston offense. The Texans have since shipped out Hopkins and brought in Brandin Cooks and Randall Cobb, setting up a crowded WR room where Fuller could emerge as the new No. 1. There were hints of that ability last season, but Fuller was held back by the familiar combination of drops (five) and missed games (five), ultimately recording each of his three TDs and 32 percent of his yards in a single Week 5 matchup with Atlanta. He also had two games with fewer than 20 snaps, so his per-game numbers look much better (72.6 yards) if those contests are removed.
Fuller (sports hernia) will be joined by fellow deep threat Brandin Cooks in the 2020 Texans offense, ESPN.com's Sarah Barshop reports. Fuller and Cooks have a lot in common, including sub-4.35 speed, worrisome medical records and age (the latter is seven months older). The trade for Cooks leaves Houston with four wide receivers that have started more than 40 games in the NFL, as Kenny Stills and Randall Cobb also are on the roster. However, Stills and Fuller can become unrestricted free agents next spring, and Cooks' contract doesn't offer any guarantees or protection beyond 2020. Given the contract situations and injury histories, it isn't surprising that Bill O'Brien wants four starting-caliber receivers on his team, though he probably would've been better off with one sure thing in DeAndre Hopkins. In any case, Fuller is recovering from January surgery to repair a sports hernia, with plenty of time to rehab before the unknown start date for NFL practices.
Fuller (sports hernia) became the Texans top wideout after the team traded DeAndre Hopkins to Arizona, Sarah Barshop of ESPN.com reports. The Hopkins trade continues to reverberate around Houston, and head coach Bill O'Brien is putting a lot of pressure on Fuller to be the No. 1 wide receiver. Fuller undoubtedly makes the Texans better -- in 2019, they were 8-3 and averaged 26.3 points per game when he played, 2-3 and 19.6 when he didn't. But it's important to remember that Hopkins was around for those games when Fuller was healthy, and keeping Fuller healthy for an entire 16-game schedule will be a challenge. Hopkins has missed just two games over seven NFL seasons, while Fuller has yet to play a full season and, on average, has missed 5.5 games per season during his four-year NFL career.
Fuller recently underwent sports hernia surgery after aggravating a previous groin injury in the AFC divisional-round loss to the Chiefs, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports. This shouldn't come as a huge surprise given the injury was serious enough to keep Fuller off the field in the team's wild-card win over the Bills, and it held him to a game-time decision leading into the aforementioned loss against the Chiefs. With only one year left on his 2016 rookie deal, the Texans may attempt to re-sign the 25-year-old on a relatively team-friendly deal in the offseason thanks to his injury-prone nature.
Fuller caught five of eight targets for 89 receiving yards during Sunday's 51-31 divisional-round loss to Kansas City. Returning from the groin injury that forced him to sit out Houston's preceding two contests, Fuller tied Duke Johnson for second on the team in targets while chalking up his greatest yardage output since Week 12. Missing time due to injury has unfortunately become a pattern across Fuller's professional career, as he's missed a combined 20 regular-season games since the start of 2017. When he's on the field, Fuller is undoubtedly a potent downfield threat, averaging 15.1 yards per catch with 14 scores over his past three campaigns. The Notre Dame product remains under contract with Houston for one more season at a cap hit of $10.2 million, when he's set to once again serve as the Texans' No. 2 receiver alongside DeAndre Hopkins.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|1||09/11||@Kansas City Chiefs||4||16.68|
|7||10/25||Green Bay Packers||12||19.22|
|11||11/22||New England Patriots||1||12.76|
|3 Year Avg||55||36||532||5||23||14.78||83|