-The Texans were entering their off day and there was a slight lull when practice started. Head Coach Bill O’Brien decided to liven up practice by putting the team into a full contact goal line situation. The goal line work was taken over by the defense, who were flying around as a group and laying the lumber on the offense. It was good to see a defense attacking once again in Houston.
-If the Texans want to play big upfront on their defensive line, they showed they can with Ricardo Mathews and Jerrell Powe. Add in Louis Nix when he gets
healthy, the Texans have a chance to have a stout defensive line against the run. Powe and Mathews dominated the line of scrimmage against the offensive
line and created alleys for linebackers to make plays on the football.
-Mike Mohamed, Jeff Tarpinian and Justin Tuggle have settled well in the new defense and all three understand their roles. During the
goal line drill, the group stood out as they were attacking ball carriers in the backfield and making tackles. Mohamed is a blue collar worker of the group
who excels inside the box, while Tuggle has evolved into a complete linebacker who can cover and play the run very well. As for Tarpinian, he has been the
best coverage linebacker all camp and he gives the position group plenty of options on how they want to use their inside linebackers.
-Offensive tackle Tyson Clabo continues to struggle since arriving to training camp. With his recent struggles nothing is guaranteed.
He lacks bend in his knees to get into his pass set and is not moving defenders off the football when asked to run block. The Texans will have to make a
decision on Clabo, but for the time being there is nothing pointing to him being on the roster in week one.
-It might be a broken record to this point, but A.J. Bouye continues to make things happen in the secondary. He understands what is asked of him as a
cornerback and his confidence is growing practice to practice. If he is not in receivers hip pockets, he is breaking up passes and it has been at a high
rate. Bouye’s continued growth has him pushing for the third cornerback position for the Texans and increased playing time when the regular season
-Quentin Groves is settling into the outside linebacker spot and is looking like he is providing some quality depth to the position. He is understanding
what he needs to do off the edge and he flashed some of that promise in team drills. Coming late into training camp put Groves behind the rest of the team,
but he has put enough plays up to move himself up the depth chart.
-Safety Kendrick Lewis returned to the field today after an absence due to a small setback. He was limited on what he could do on the field, but having the
veteran back is a good sign for a defense that needs him.
-Brooks Reed came out on a mission and he played the most physical we have seen him since camp started. He was giving lead blockers all they wanted today
and creating issues in the run game. Reed has played with much more purpose since being coached by Mike Vrabel, and seeing if it carries out to the game
days will be something to watch.
-Alfred Blue and Jonathan Grimes have taken the bulk of the work since Arian Foster went on the shelf with his maintenance issue to his body. Both Blue and
Grimes have taken the opportunity and helped their cause to be in the discussion to get more time on the field. Blue has been building day to day to prove
that he is more than capable to contribute from day one. Grimes since returning from injury has really put together a strong camp and he continues to be a
player that the offensive staff is getting comfortable with in their system.
-Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick showed a new part of his game today with his ability to get the football to his receivers from different release points when
throwing. He can drop down to almost sidearm and get it to receivers to avoid getting the ball batted down. He showed more of that part of his game in the
recent days and helped the offense move the football today.
-Randy Bullock continued a strong camp and did not miss a single kick. He has been working hard to keep his spot on this team and making all of his
attempts is a good start for the third year kicker.
-Ricardo Mathews ended practice today by catching a punt off the foot of Shane Lechler. The finger tip catch was celebrated by his teammates, and Mathews
even showed off some moves to break into open field to avoid being mobbed by his teammates. Mathews joins Ben Jones and Derek Newton as linemen who have
ended practice early for the Texans.