Texans Training Camp: Day Ten
The Houston Texans have taken one step closer to the preseason kickoff against the Minnesota Vikings. There are two more practices before they board the flight and then the season will finally kick off for all of the fans to see.
- The offense looked sluggish today against the defense. With a couple of drops from Andre Johnson and misfires from Matt Schaub to wide receivers, it was the first day where the offense was not efficient. The first and second units have been performing at a high level all training camp but the passing game was the main issue today.
- Nose tackle Earl Mitchell has been making plays non stop in the backfield with the majority of his time coming against center Chris Myers. His technique looks even more refined and his footwork has only gotten better. His playing days as a fullback at Arizona show and his ability to accelerate in small spaces is what set him apart. He has also showed a much better understanding in the run game and how he needs to operate next to J.J. Watt and Antonio Smith.
- Also, nose tackle Daniel Muir has come back from an ankle injury that he suffered during camp late last week. Muir has been a wrecking ball and our own Jay Foreman (Former Texans ILB) commented on his footwork for his 322 lb. frame and how impressed he was with Muir. When he plays low and with a flat back, he is hard to stop. He possesses one of the more impressive hand slaps in his pass rush. He is a strong player and there is no secret why he started for the Colts for two seasons.
- Willie Jefferson has also been putting in work to get his run game defense better and it has shown the past couple of practices. Jefferson is doing a much better job of keeping offensive linemen off of his body and he is taking to what Coach Reggie Herring is asking from him. His technique is only getting better with each practice and he made a strong play today when he lined up against Duane Brown. During a pass rush, the offense ran a draw and he was able to circle all the way around Brown and trip up the ball carrier for a one yard gain.
- Kareem Jackson got the best of DeAndre Hopkins today and this was after Hopkins put the show on the defensive backs yesterday. Jackson was able to break up some passes on the fade route, the exact route Hopkins made some big catches the last time they did red zone work.
- Inside linebacker Tim Dobbins went down with a shoulder injury he suffered during the team drill. The x-rays came out negative which is a good thing for an injury prone inside linebacker group.
- Defensive back Roc Carmichael had a solid day and he had back to back plays where he knocked the pass out of Andre Johnson and DeAndre Hopkins hands in consecutive plays. Carmichael has plays like this that show what he can do. Not to be out done, his good friend Brandon Harris also looked great in coverage. He did a good job in the redzone breaking up passes in the endzone and showed that with a ball intended for Keshawn Martin. Both Harris and Carmichael provided some good looks for the defense and were some of the main reasons for the offensive struggles.
- Yes injuries are always a concern but Darryl Sharpton has laid the hammer to runners the past two days. Sharpton took advantage of Cierre Wood’s upright running style and met him one on one in the hole, and Sharpton was the one left standing. It is no secret why Sharpton is always nicked up and the majority of it has to do with his playing style. It might be best served to have Joe Mays be the starter with Sharpton the fill in guy when needed to limit his playing time and chances to be hurt on the field.
- We are not making up what is going to be said, but punter Shane Lechler made a jaw dropping kick today. Lechler was standing inside his own ten yard line and he punted the ball and it LANDED inside the five yard line on the other side of the field. This is not a tall tale. We had witnesses and it was a sight to see.
- Rookie defensive lineman Chris Jones showed what made him successful at Bowling Green, and that was his pass rush game. He put some strong moves on Brandon Brooks and what makes Jones successful is his hand game in the trenches and him not stopping his legs while rushing. Him putting the pads on have really helped him get to what makes him good, playing to contact and causing issues for offensive linemen.
- Trevardo Williams finally made a big play off a tipped pass that resulted in an interception. It was probably his first bright spot of camp and he needs a confidence boost in a big way. Texas heat and the NFL game have really tested Williams and he is still pushing hard to try and make a difference for the team.
Pic of the Day
Deion Sanders Talks to the Defensive Back
You can follow Patrick on Twitter. He is the Editor of State of the Texans.