Is Da’Quan Bowers A Good Fit For The Houston Texans?
With the first day of NFL Free Agency in the books, it seems the Houston Texans have opted to wait until Day 2 to start signing new players.
It has been widely believed that former Browns quarterback Brian Hoyer will be signing with the Texans any time now, and there are even reports that ex-Patriot defensive tackle Vince Wilfork is being pursued by the Texans. But one other player to watch is former Tampa Bay defensive lineman Da’Quan Bowers.
Bowers was the Buccaneers’ 2nd round pick in 2011 (yes, the same draft as J.J. Watt). He was widely regarded as one of the best players in the NFL Draft after recording 15.5 sacks with the Clemson Tigers in his junior season, and was even seen as a possible candidate for the number one pick.
When it came time for the draft, however, Bowers slipped out of the first round due to medical issues, specifically knee surgery he had over the offseason. But the Buccaneers took a risk on him, and made Da’Quan the 51st pick of the 2011 NFL Draft.
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Since then, Bowers has played in 50 of 64 games, registering a combined 66 tackles and producing only 7 total sacks in his four seasons in the league.
He missed the first 7 weeks of the 2012 season after tearing his Achilles tendon in May of that year. He then spent the last 3 games of 2013 on injury reserve after aggravating his knees, which would require surgery. Then, in 2014, he was suspended for two games for usage of performance-enhancing drugs. He missed significant playing time, and this led to a rift between him and the Tampa Bay coaching staff.
"“I think every day you don’t practice you’re hurting your chances (of making the team). We’ve seen enough to like Da’Quan a lot. But all the reps that he’s not getting, someone else is getting them. The best way to beat your competition sometimes is just to stay on the field… Da’Quan is trying to get back. Again, I think he has a future in the league, whether it be as a defensive end outside or more of a third down rush guy inside.” -Lovie Smith, Tampa Bay Times"
So why would the Houston Texans be so interested in a player with such low production and an injury-prone history?
For starters, Bowers is only 25 years old. He’s also 6’4, weighs 288 pounds, and played defensive end-tackle hybrid in Tampa’s Cover 2 defense. Head coach Bill O’Brien has been wanting to make this team bigger and younger, and that certainly describes Bowers. O’Brien also loves versatility, and that’s something the former Buccaneer brings to the table.
Adding Bowers would also give defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel another big man to move around the line, rotating with defensive end Jared Crick. With such low statistical seasons, Bowers also shouldn’t cost too much for the Texans.
Da’Quan Bowers may not have had the greatest career so far, but he showed huge potential in college, and could be a great candidate to come back and start to meet expectations with the right coaching. He would also add youth and depth to the Texans’ defensive line, and for a small price.
All in all, he would be an interesting addition to the Houston Texans, and his high upside could possibly pay off if the Texans take a risk on this young player.
Next: Is Pitting Brian Hoyer Vs. Ryan Mallett Good For The Houston Texans?