Houston Texans Positional Breakdown: Offensive Line

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September 14, 2014; Oakland, CA, USA; Houston Texans tackle Duane Brown (76) during the first quarter against the Oakland Raiders at O.co Coliseum. The Texans defeated the Raiders 30-14. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Duane Brown, Left Tackle, 6’4″ 303 Pounds, 29 Years Old

The Texans have been involved in a youth movement as of late, as evidenced by 29-year-old tackle Duane Brown being the oldest projected starter along the line.

Some Background Info;

Drafted with the 26th overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft out of Virginia Tech, Brown has started 106 games in his NFL career. He has been as durable as he has been reliable on the field, missing only two games in 2013 and and four in 2010.

He started immediately as a rookie and while the team is mostly viewed as a running team, he did anchor a line in 2009 that saw former quarterback Matt Schaub lead the NFL with 4,770 yards passing. The Virginia native has shown that he is just as capable in pass protection as he is in clearing lanes for Foster and company.

In 2010 he showed his smarts off as well, as he was able to complete the season without being called one time for holding.

What To Expect This Year;

After signing a six-year $53.4 million deal in 2012 it was clear that the team views Brown as the centerpiece to this line.

Look for the three-time pro bowler (2012, 2013 and 2014) to continue his exceptional play for the Texans and lock down the blindside for either quarterback Ryan Mallett or Brian Hoyer.

Nov 30, 2014; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Texans receiver Andre Johnson (80) runs after a reception with blocking provided by Derek Newton (75) against the Tennessee Titans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Derek Newton, Right Tackle, 6’6″ 313 Pounds, 27 Years Old

Right tackle Derek Newton entered free agency this offseason, and it didn’t take long for the team to lock him up with a five-year, $26.5 million deal. By locking both tackles up for the foreseeable future, Houston has shown how much they value the edges of their offensive line.

Some Background Info;

Picked at the opposite end of the draft as Brown, Newton was a seventh round selection for Houston in 2011. His first season he was a back up, but has started every game he has played in since that year, including all 32 the past two seasons.

The small-school player from Arkansas State was seen as a potential developmental guy by many scouts and Houston was able to reap the benefits of that development way earlier than expected.

What To Expect This Year;

No one will challenge either starter on the edges here, and I expect Newton to continue to show his worth on the right side and open up holes for the run game. His durability has also been phenomenal as he has only missed two games (both in 2012) due to injury, so look for him to be suited up every day for the Texans.

Next: The Starting Guards