Post-Draft 53 Man Roster Projection For Houston Texans


The Houston Texans wrapped up their draft and immediately afterwards brought in several undrafted free agents to fill the holes along their roster. While the team may still bring in some different players, or possibly make an unexpected cut, or trade, here is an early projection of how the 53-man roster will work out for the 2015 season.

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Quarterback (3)

Ryan Mallett
Brian Hoyer
Tom Savage

No surprises here as the team did nothing in the draft to try and unseat any of the three guys currently on the roster.

Running Back (3)

Arian Foster
Alfred Blue
Kenny Hilliard

An interesting move here to cut both Jonathan Grimes and newcomer Chris Polk, but there is something about sixth round pick Kenny Hilliard I really liked at LSU. He has good speed and with some work can be molded into a quality back up.

Full Back (1)

Jay Prosch

No competition currently on the roster for Prosch means he is pretty much not going anywhere barring an injury.

Wide Receiver (6)

DeAndre Hopkins
Jaelen Strong
Cecil Shorts III
Nate Washington
Keshawn Martin
Damaris Johnson

Draft pick Keith Mumphery was the one pick I didn’t like over the weekend and he fails to make the cut here. Chandler Worthy from Troy is small and fast, and while I think he has a chance to catch on somewhere, he’s too similar to Damaris Johnson for the Texans to carry now. Could be a practice squad guy.

Tight End (3)

Garrett Graham
C.J. Fiedorowicz
Ryan Griffin

The one spot I wanted change at more than any other, and they did nothing. A couple undrafted guys were brought in, but won’t do enough to unseat this underwhelming trio of tight ends.

Offensive Line (9)

Duane Brown
Xavier Su’a-Filo
Ben Jones
Brandon Brooks
Derek Newton
Jeff Adams
Tyson Clabo
Greg Mancz
Chad Slade

Two undrafted players make this list in Mancz and Slade. Mancz is a smart player who understands line calls and can fill in at guard or center. Depending on his work they may not need Slade, but he gets the nod here as the only other back up interior lineman. Playing in the SEC at Auburn gives Slade the edge over other undrafted guys.

Defensive Line (6)

J.J. Watt
Vince Wilfork
Jared Crick
Keith Browner
Louis Nix, III
Jeoffrey Pagan

Not much change here at all from last year, except seeing Wilfork there at the nose. Christian Covington should crack the rotation but an injury may have him coming off the PUP and missing the first six weeks. Also, look for Brandon Ivory out of Alabama to challenge Nix. Whiel Ivory was undrafted and Nix was a third round pick, the team has been disappointed in Nix and could look to move on.

Outside Linebackers (5)

Whitney Mercilus
Jadeveon Clowney
Lynden Trail
Tony Washington Jr.
Reshard Cliett

The guy I am most anxious to see is Lynden Trail from Norfolk State, who is considered a sleeper by many. Shocker he wasn’t drafted, but the Texans could benefit from this. Washington also makes it as an undrafted player and sixth rounder Cliett does as well. Lots of rookies, but with the way this group underperformed last year, it will be worth it to give some young guys a chance to prove themselves.

Also, watch for Clowney to maybe have to start on the PUP list, I put him on the roster here because of optimism surrounding his rehab, but this could change once training camp opens.

Inside Linebacker (4)

Brian Cushing
Benardrick McKinney
Akeem Dent
Justin Tuggle

The only change here is seeing McKinney make the roster and a couple back ups dumped by the Texans. McKinney should start over Dent and Tuggle, but his presence alone makes this unit much more formidable. 

Cornerbacks (5)

Kareem Jackson
Johnathan Joseph
Kevin Johnson
A.J. Bouye
Andre Hal

This unit will be much better with Johnson in the mix. Their top three guys are stout, Bouye has some experience and started at times last year, making him a valuable fourth corner.

Safety (5)

D.J. Swearinger
Rahim Moore
Stevie Brown
Kurtis Drummond
Eddie Pleasant

This group went from a need to a strength in no time at all. During the draft they came to terms with former Giants starter Stevie Brown and he will back up another newcomer in Rahim Moore. Drummond was a good safety at Michigan State and can make this roster even though he wasn’t drafted.

Special Teams (3)

Randy Bullock
Shane Lechler
Jon Weeks (LS)

This unit also has no competition to speak of, even though an undrafted punter was brought in, but Lechler is going nowhere. Bullock improved, but has work to do and Weeks is a solid long snapper with no competition to take his job.

PUP (1)
Christian Covington, DL

Covington starts here on the Physically Unable to Perform list and misses the first six weeks of the season while he continues to rehab from knee surgery which cut his junior year short. He went pro early despite the injury and it cost him several rounds and a lot of money doing so.

Next: Texans Shake Up Wide Receiver Spot