Ervin averaged 31.2 yards on five kickoff returns, 10.0 yards on punt returns and caught his lone target for 12 yards in Week 1's 27-20 loss to the Patriots.
Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski purposely made his kickoffs returnable and Ervin obliged, setting up the Texans with an average field position at their own 31-yard line. Houston's return game has not been very special over the last few years, but Ervin provided some hope in the season opener.
Ervin is listed as the starting returner for kickoffs and punts in Week 1 against the Patriots.
Ervin was challenged during the preseason for both jobs, mostly by the departed Troymaine Pope, but will reprise the role he held at the start of 2017. He lasted just four games in that role before tearing a patellar tendon and was shut down for the season. On offense, Ervin is the third running back behind Lamar Miller and Alfred Blue.
Ervin is competing for a special-teams role as the main returner on both kickoffs and punts, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.
Ervin was the main returner last season before he went down in Week 4 with a torn patellar tendon. He'd also carved out a small role on offense as a receiving back with eight receptions for 38 yards. With the uncertainty surrounding D'Onta Foreman, who continues to rehab a ruptured Achilles, Ervin can put himself higher on the running back depth chart with a good camp. "I give him a lot of credit and I've seen a lot of good plays out of him on special teams and on offense for us. I think, again, that running back battle is a really, really interesting competition and we'll see how that goes in the games," said head coach Bill O'Brien. Lamar Miller is set as the starting back, but Foreman's availability for the start of the regular season is uncertain. That means Ervin or Alfred Blue could emerge as the primary backup. At 5-foot-9, 185 pounds, Ervin is the smallest of the running backs on the roster, so he may not be the first choice as a lead back should Miller suffer an injury and Foreman's rehab linger.
Ervin (knee) was medically cleared for full-contact activities ahead of training camp, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.
Ervin suffered a torn patellar tendon last October that required season-ending surgery. The 24-year-old has seen most of his snaps on special teams during his two seasons in the league, tallying 356 total yards on kickoff returns and 321 yards on punt returns.
It was revealed Monday that Ervin suffered a torn patellar tendon in Sunday's win over the Titans that would require season-ending surgery, so the move to IR isn't a surprising one. The Texans will replace the running back on the 53-man roster with defensive back Marcus Cromartie.
|4||9/30/18||@ IND||1:00 pm|
|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|