This game will feature hardly any players that make a true difference on either side of the ball for the Texans. However, while this game is pointless for starters, it could not be more meaningful for the bubble guys. Thus those will be the battles to watch for in tonight’s game.
John Beck vs Case Keenum
Beck makes sense for the Texans. He has experience, and he has played in a system that is extremely similar to what the Texans play. The Texans know what they are getting when they keep John Beck, unfortunately that’s not necessarily a good thing. Keenum on the other hand has drawn comparisons to Brees based solely on size and a better than average deep ball. While Keenum is undersized, and he has a significantly higher upside than Beck. The two will battle it out for a majority of tonight’s game and considering they are entering the game pretty much even their play tonight should decide who earns the roster spot.
Justin Forsett vs Jonathan Grimes
Justin Forsett is lightning in a bottle. He is a quick playmaker that the Texans can bring in as a situational spell guy and can be a significant contributor to the team. He doesn’t really fit the one-cut style offense the Texans run but he is a willing learner and has looked good during camp, so as he continues to progress in his understanding of the playbook, so too will he progress on the field. Grimes on the other hand could not be a better fit for the one-cut. Unfortunately for him, however, he joined the team as an undrafted free agent that was very far behind on the depth chart making it almost impossible for him to leapfrog Forsett. Honestly, I don’t see this as a true battle because I think Forsett will make the team regardless. It’s just a matter of if Grimes could steal another spot and force the Texans to carry four halfbacks.
Sherrick McMannis vs Roc Carmichael
The last two battles of significance for the Texans will come in the secondary. McMannis and Carmichael are both vying for that fifth corner spot and is unlikely that the Texans will carry six. If they do decide to have more corners than average then it is likely that both will make the team considering Tori Williams was cut earlier this week, but I expect Kubiak to move them both around and play them on either of the outside receivers and in the slot as well. If I had to guess I’d say Carmichael has the inside track to making the roster but like the quarterback battle it will more than likely come down to who has a better game tonight.
Shiloh Keo vs Quentin Demps/Troy Nolan
Keo kept his roster spot last year because the Texans used a fifth-round pick on him. Had he been an undrafted guy they would’ve kicked him to the curb as he played horribly through last year’s preseason. While he has played significantly better in his sophomore season he still appears to be being outplayed by both Demps and Nolan. Demps has the upperhand on Nolan because he is a capable returner, but in a world where the only thing that matters is skill both of them would make the roster and Keo would be left out in the cold. However, Keo will more than likely make the roster because he still does have upside and Nolan will probably be a casualty because of it.
Trindon Holliday vs Himself
As I said last week Holliday has shown enough explosiveness to have a roster spot, as long as he doesn’t shoot himself in the foot. He did just that last week fumbling two returns and losing one of them which was returned for a touchdown. If he can play better this week he will have a spot. He doesn’t even need a big a return, though it would make an otherwise unwatchable game, slightly more bearable. If Holliday does have a fumble party like he did last week, he will make Kubiak’s job that much more difficult.