March 21, 2018

Quick Hitter: End of Mini-Camp

The Houston Texans wrapped up their mandatory mini-camp and head into a five-week down period before training camp kicks off. The mini-camp was centered around the younger players on the team and to get them the extra work they needed to get more work on the field without the veterans taking their workload.

After being at mini-camp, OTAs and rookie mini-camp there are questions that have risen after the 16 total practices the Texans have worked in.


Thoughts Heading into Offseason


Brian Cushing

Brian Cushing

Derek Newton (knee), Tim Jamison (Achilles), Brian Cushing (ACL), DeVier Posey (Achilles), Ed Reed (Hip), Arian Foster (Calf) and Brennan William (Knee) all have been rehabbing hard to get ready for the arrival of training camp. The biggest question mark only surrounds Reed and how bad his hip really is, the biggest surprise is how well Posey has been moving. This week was the first time he has run on the field since the injury and it was very impressive to see where he is with his rehab only 6 months out of the injury.

Foster is scheduled to make training camp with no issues, and from Newton, Jamison, Cushing and Williams they all are moving around well and there are no signs for concern.


Issues at Nose Tackle

The more the practices went on anyone not named Earl Mitchell that played at nose tackle was average at best. The leader to take the backup spot behind Mitchell is Terrell McClain who looks in great shape, but there is still work in pads to take place. Then there is David Hunter and rookie draft pick Chris Jones that have not really stood out from the crowd. So if McClain, Hunter or Jones can’t step up the play this could be a growing issue prior to the season.


A.J. Bouye

A.J. Bouye

UDFAs With a Chance

There are always the long shots that start the season with the team, but with each passing practice some rookies are turning in good work to possibly make this team in some capacity. Running back Cierre Wood and cornerback A.J. Bouye are the early favorites to make the 53 man roster in our estimation. While safety Orhian Johnson, wide receiver Andy Cruse, wide receiver EZ Nwahukwu, inside linebacker Evan Frierson, and running back Dennis Johnson are making waves to make this team in some capacity. Rookie free agents are some of our stories to monitor and the group of 22 undrafted rookie always keeps our interest.


The Montgomery Factor

There has been plenty of negative press about rookie outside linebacker Sam Montgomery prior to his arrival in Houston. One thing is for sure since day one he reported as rookie mini-camp not in the best shape, Montgomery has progressed better than expected in his new position. If Montgomery can learn his position well and contribute from week one, it will allow the Texans to move Brooks Reed if needed. The Texans need another outside linebacker to take pressure off of Whitney Mercilus and Reed. Early signs point to Montgomery being better than what is being lead to believe, and seeing the speed he plays with on the field is a good sign for a defense that needs some life on the edge.


Contracts and Extensions?

$2.8 million under the salary cap with DeAndre Hopkins, D.J. Swearinger and Brennan Williams still needing to sign their deals. Also, throw in the recent rumor of Vonta Leach wanting to come to Houston which will require some money to make work. Then there is the contract extensions that veteran defensive end Antonio Smith and linebacker Brian Cushing want to stay in Houston, and if one or both get what they want could help create cap relief for this season to make more moves.

The Texans also will need some room cap room during the season just in case of injuries. There is a feeling that the Texans are not done shaping their roster prior to the open of training camp to help fill some depth voids in the current roster. The moves will need to be made for this season and the future of the team, which domino falls first is the next question.



You can follow Patrick on Twitter.  He is the Editor of State of the Texans.



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