James, 31, has previously spent his entire NFL career playing for the Dallas Cowboys, including a stint with current Texans defensive coordinator Wade Phillips. While James’ heydays are most likely behind him, his familiarity with Phillips’ system and clubhouse leadership should provide much-needed depth to the Texans’ LB unit following the departure of DeMeco Ryans.
A six-year veteran out of Iowa State, Dobbins was a Texan in 2011, playing a backup role to the incumbent Brian Cushing at inside linebacker while also contributing at special teams. He led the Texans with nine special teams tackles last season.
With Cushing expected to handle the bulk of playing time at ILB as an every-down player, James and Dobbins will compete with the young, talented, but injury-prone Darryl Sharpton for the remaining ILB spot.
As the Texans have shown time and time again during a injury-derailed campaign in 2011, you can never overlook roster depth. One star player no matter how great he is cannot shoulder the load of carrying a team throughout a season. And while these low-profile signings don’t necessarily create a great deal of buzz among the fanbase, they are crucial to the success of an NFL franchise.
All in all, solid acquisitions by Rick Smith.