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.
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.
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.
Mercilus (hamstring) was a full participant in Friday's practice and will play Sunday against the Patriots.
Mercilus will start at outside linebacker in the season opener. He can add a sustained pass rush to the Texans' defensive front, as he had 19.5 sacks between the 2015 and 2016 seasons. Mercilus only played five games last season due to a pectoral injury and made 10 tackles and one sack. The 28-year-old could be a sleeper IDP pick due to his lack of fantasy production lately.
Mercilus (undisclosed) has not practiced in over a week while dealing with a soft-tissue injury, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.
The injury was earlier described as undisclosed, so "soft-tissue" represents a bit more detail, though not much. Head coach Bill O'Brien said Mercilus is being managed and "doing fine." There is no word on his availability for Saturday's preseason tilt against the 49ers, though it's safe to assume Houston will exercise precaution with one of its defensive stars.
|7||10/21/18||@ JAC||1:00 pm|
|9||11/4/18||@ DEN||4:05 pm|
|Bye: Week 10|
|11||11/18/18||@ WAS||1:00 pm|
|16||12/23/18||@ PHI||1:00 pm|
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|