Houston Texans Positional Breakdown: Running Back

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Nov 30, 2014; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Texans running back Arian Foster (23) before a game against the Tennessee Titans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Arian Foster, 6’1″ 227 Pounds, 28 Years Old

Arian Foster is the all-time leading rusher in the short history of the Texans with 6,309 yards so far in his career. He has also added 2,041 yards receiving and scored 74 rushing and 12 receiving touchdowns in his celebrated career.

Some Background Info;

Foster shows no signs of slowing down when he is on the field, as he averaged 4.8 yards per carry in 2014, which is higher than his career average of 4.5 yards. Not only is he reliable when he is given the ball, but he also unbelievably consistent year-in and year-out.

In fact since taking over the job as feature back in H-Town, his worst average yard per carry was in 2012 when he had 4.1. Take out 2013 when he missed eight games due to injury and his worst rushing total for a season came in 2011 when he had 1,224 yards. That season he only played 13 games due to injury.

Last season Foster again missed three games due to an injury and wouldn’t you know Mr. Consistent himself had 1,246 yards. The numbers are crazy when you really look at how steady of a player the former Volunteer has been for the Texans.

What To Expect This Year;

At this point in his career it would be hard to expect anything less than a rushing average of slightly more than four yards per carry out of Foster. However, there is some cause for concern when you take a step back and look at a couple of things.

First, he will be turning 29 in August, and as anyone who pays attention to NFL running backs knows, a lot of players begin to fall off around this time in their careers. Now some like Adrian Peterson of the Minnesota Vikings are able to continue their productivity, so the question becomes is Foster an outlier like AP, or will his body give out on him like many others?

“[Foster] has a lot of football left in him [we will] “communicate with him and try to manage his workload”

The second issue is tied directly to that question and there is good reason to worry here. Foster has missed 11 games in the past two seasons, and while he looked great when he did play in 2014, the hits may be taking their toll. Perhaps it is just a streak of bad luck and Foster will bounce back and play all 16 games in 2015.

In all actuality Foster shows no signs of slowing down and even though the injuries have varied, there doesn’t seem to be a recurring issue that will threaten his career long term. Head coach Bill O’Brien also seems to think the end is not near for the star rusher.

If I were a betting man I would place the over on Foster getting 1,000 yards and at a minimum four yards per rushing attempt. Especially now as the team has reloaded some youth at the wide receiver spot, I look for Arian to find some running lanes for at least a few more years.

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