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59 Whitney Mercilus OLB

Houston Texans

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January 13, 2020 07:28 AM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Minimal impact in playoff loss
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus had one tackle and one quarterback hit in Sunday's 51-31 playoff loss to the Chiefs.

Mercilus ended what is considered a successful season on a down note, as did the rest of the Houston defense which at one point allowed seven consecutive touchdown drives to Kansas City. He played a full 16-game schedule for the second straight season and proved himself a worthy successor to Jadeveon Clowney on the edge. Mercilus had 48 tackles, 7.5 sacks, two interceptions, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery. All that production earned him four additional years, so he'll patrol the edge and opponents' backfields in 2020.

January 6, 2020 06:24 PM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Makes impact in playoff win
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus recorded four tackles, one sack, three quarterback hits and forced a fumble in Saturday's 22-19 overtime win over the Bills in an AFC wild-card playoff game.

Early in the fourth quarter, Mercilus dislodged the ball from quarterback Josh Allen, which was recovered by teammate Jacob Martin and set up Houston's second score in its comeback victory. It was the fifth forced fumble of the year for Mercilus, who has thrived in the role once held by Jadeveon Clowney.

December 28, 2019 04:08 PM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Secures four more years
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus signed a four-year, $54 million contract extension with $24.5 million guaranteed with the Texans on Saturday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.

The Texans have counted on Mercilus this season following the trade of Jadeveon Clowney to Seattle and J.J. Watt (pectoral) landing on IR. Mercilus has answered the call, recording 48 tackles, 7.5 sacks -- his highest total since 2016 -- and four forced fumbles. The 2012 first-round pick will avoid free agency in March, as he's locked down through the 2023 season.

December 20, 2019 01:56 PM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Named Pro Bowl alternate
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus has been named a Pro Bowl alternate, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Mercilus is having a nice season during his walk year, improving his value in the pending free-agent market. The 29-year-old edge player has 5.5 sacks, four forced fumbles , one fumble recovery and two interceptions.

October 21, 2019 04:04 PM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Back in sack column
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus recorded four tackles, a half-sack, one quarterback hit and a fumble recovery in Sunday's 30-23 loss to Indianapolis in Week 7.

Mercilus recorded his first sack since Week 4 and leads the Texans with 5.5 for the season. The fumble recovery was his first to go along with four forced fumbles.

September 30, 2019 09:08 AM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Keep sack streak alive
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus recorded two tackles, a sack, a quarterback hit and forced a fumble in Sunday's 16-10 loss to the Panthers in Week 4.

Mercilus recorded a sack for the fourth straight contest and leads the Texans in that category with five over the first four weeks. That's as many as he had over the last two seasons (21 games).

September 23, 2019 08:00 AM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Forces turnover in win
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus had five tackles, two tackles for losses, a quarterback hit and a strip sack in Sunday's 27-20 win over the Chargers in Week 3.

For the second week in a row, a turnover caused by Mercilus led to Houston's game-winning score. His strip sack of quarterback Phil Rivers caused a fumble recovered by teammate Zach Cunningham and led to Houston's third touchdown. He leads the team with four sacks, has caused three fumbles and owns an interception through three weeks.

September 18, 2019 10:56 PM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Wins weekly award
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus was named the AFC Defensive Player of the Week for Week 2, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Mercilus recorded two sacks, two forced fumbles, two quarterback hits and two tackles during Houston's 13-12 win over Jacksonville. This marks the second time he's won the weekly award. Through two weeks, the edge rusher has three sacks and one interception.

September 16, 2019 07:52 AM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Makes impact again
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus had two tackles, two sacks, two quarterback hits and two forced fumbles in Sunday's 13-12 win over the Jaguars in Week 2.

Mercilus' second forced fumble, recovered by J.J. Watt on Jacksonville's 11-yard line, led to Houston's lone touchdown. The performance was his first multi-sack game since 2016. No longer limited to dropping back in coverage, Mercilus is allowed to focus on getting to the quarterback in 2019, a return to the type of player he was from 2012 to 2016 when had a combined 37.5 sacks. Through two weeks in 2019, Mercilus has seven tackles, three sacks, two forced fumbles and an interception.

September 10, 2019 03:48 PM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Excellent opening performance
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus made five tackles, a sack, a pass breakup and an interception in Monday's loss to the Saints.

Mercilus is being counted on to replace Jadeveon Clowney at outside linebacker, and he was outstanding. He strutted out his versatility, as he worked well in coverage and pass-rushing situations. This is an encouraging sign for the Texans, especially since it came against an accurate Drew Brees and a tough offensive line. Mercilus is a solid IDP pickup with a Week 2 matchup against rookie QB Gardner Minshew and the Jaguars on tap.

September 6, 2019 08:00 AM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Clowney replacement
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Houston defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel will use Mercilus as an edge pass rusher to make up for the loss of Jadeveon Clowney, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Crennel started the process during training camp and preseason games when Clowney was a holdout, so Mercilus should hit the ground running (or pass rushing) from the edge Week 1. He was used more in pass coverage last season, which played a role in him recording just four sacks. When he played a pass-rushing role previously, Mercilus recorded 37.5 sacks over a five-year stretch from 2012 to 2016.

August 18, 2019 08:12 AM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Makes impact Saturday
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus had a sack and a forced fumble during Saturday's preseason Week 2 win over the Lions.

With Jadeveon Clowney holding out and not playing during the preseason, Mercilus has stepped into an edge rusher role and made his presence felt in limited playing time. He was more involved in pass coverage last season, as he dealt with hamstring and back injuries, but head coach Bill O'Brien indicated he'll expand Mercilus' role in an effort to create havoc for opposing quarterbacks. "He's playing more off the edge of the defense, but he still plays at the second level sometimes," O'Brien told Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. "He's doing more of what he did two or three years ago, no doubt." That means even with Clowney, who is expected to report in time for the regular season, Mercilus could return to being an IDP candidate, as he was in 2016 and 2017 when he had 19.5 sacks.

August 12, 2019 06:28 PM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Will move around
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus is expected to line up at various spots, the Texans' official site reports.

Houston defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel addressed the assembled media following practice and hopes moving Mercilus around creates an opportunity for him to earn more sacks. "Whitney is one of those guys that - he had 12 sacks a couple of years ago - He's the ultimate team guy and he will do whatever we ask him to do and I think that we are going to try to move him around a little bit more this year than we did last year and see what that does for him," Crennel said. Health may have contributed to Mercilus recording just four sacks in 2018. After missing 11 games in 2017 due to a pectoral injury, he was saddled by a preseason hamstring injury that lingered into the regular season.

December 31, 2018 04:40 PM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Finishes on positive note
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus had two tackles and assisted on a sack in Sunday's 20-3 win over Jacksonville.

Mercilus finished off a down year on an up note. Coming off a 2017 season shortened to five games by a pectoral injury, Mercilus didn't play in the preseason due to a hamstring injury and was slow to make an impact when he returned for the regular season. Mercilus managed to play all 16 games, something coach Bill O'Brien values, and was in on 75 percent of the defensive snaps, down from the 86 percent he played during his last full season. He'll enter 2019 with one season left on a four-year deal.

November 27, 2018 11:56 PM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Shows out Monday
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus recorded five tackles (three solo) and 1.5 sacks across 47 defensive snaps in Monday's win over the Titans.

Mercilus has had a nose for the quarterback the past two weeks, recording 2.5 sacks during that span. He'll take on the Browns next, who have allowed 35 sacks this season, which is seventh-highest in the league.

November 21, 2018 01:52 AM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Posts sack in win
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus recorded three tackles (two solo), including one sack, in Sunday's win over the Redskins.

Mercilus has had a relatively disappointing season by his standards. Averaging just over two stops per game, he's on pace for the lowest season totals in tackles and sacks since his rookie year (save for his injury-shortened 2017 campaign). Looking ahead, he'll aim to carry over his strong play into Week 12 as the Texans take on Tennessee.

October 22, 2018 11:04 AM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Notches first sack
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus had four tackles, a sack and two forced fumbles in Sunday's 20-7 win over the Jaguars.

Mercilus had a breakout game Week 7 after recording just 13 tackles over the first six weeks. Whether or not a preseason strained hamstring and/or last year's torn pectoral muscle has limited Mercilus, Sunday's outing was a promising sign for the rest of the season.

October 12, 2018 09:44 AM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: In rotation on edge
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel said Mercilus has received fewer opportunities because he's part of a playing rotation, which has contributed to his slow start to the season, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Mercilus, who didn't record a tackle in 50 snaps (80.6%) last week, has just nine tackles overall -- including one for a loss -- with three quarterback hits and no sacks. "Whitney understands what I'm trying to get done, and why he's not in there quite as much and he goes in there and he performs when he's in there," said Crennel. "There's some value in that as well. I know everybody says, he should have 12 sacks and all that good stuff, but if he does his job and helps the team win, then we'll all be satisfied." It sounds like Crennel is providing cover for the six-year veteran, who had 37.5 sacks over his first five seasons, as Mercilus has played more than 80 percent of the defensive snaps. The production dropoff may be the result of health; Merciuls may not be fully over last year's pectoral injury and a hamstring injury that kept him out all preseason.

October 3, 2018 11:28 AM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Tallies three QB hits in Week 4
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus recorded one tackle and three quarterback hits Sunday in the Texans' 37-34 overtime win over the Colts.

These were Mercilus' first quarterback hits of the season. He missed all of preseason with a hamstring injury, but any rust should have worn off by now. While Mercilus' production has lagged, the silver lining is that the team's top two pass rushers, J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney, created havoc against the Colts. If both remain consistently productive, it could open more lanes to the quarterback for Mercilus.

September 20, 2018 11:16 PM
Texans' Whitney Mercilus: Looking for first sack
by RotoWire Staff | RotoWire

Mercilus continues to work his way back from a strained hamstring, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports. The linebacker has zero sacks and five tackles through two games.

Mercilus has gotten off to a slow start after missing all of preseason with a hamstring injury, but defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel sees improvement. "He's gotten better. Because he's rusty in the first game, but he's improving every week as well. We talk about knocking rust off, and he's knocking his rust off and he's getting his take-off better, his counter moves and things like that. So, every week, we should see some progress," said Crennel. With opponents double-teaming J.J. Watt, a healthy Mercilus will be in position to apply pressure on quarterbacks and possibly accrue sacks.

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