Houston Texans Morning Huddle–Line Depleted
By Josh McSwain
Here are your Texans headlines to kick off your weekend. We start off with two devastating blows to the offensive line:
Nick Martin out for the season by Sports Xchange
"Martin, the 50th pick in the 2016 draft, was slated to start for the Texans this season. But a severe ankle injury suffered in a joint practice with the New Orleans Saints last week is likely to cost Martin the entire season."
I assumed that Martin would be the starting center this coming season. But now that is out the window, which means that either veteran Tony Bergstrom or Greg Mancz will be the starter, and I lean toward the former to be in the middle of the line.
Brown not expected to be ready for the opener by Matt Weston, Battle Red Blog
"Chris Clark was re-signed this past offseason for two years and $6 million to be a swing tackle in case something like this happened.Clark will now start the year at left tackle. He’s about as good as it gets for a third tackle when it comes to pass blocking. In the run game, he’s limited. He misses blocks and has trouble moving the first level. That’s not what he was signed for, though. What’s important is Chris Clark is solid. He can hold down the LT spot and provide adequate blindside protection for Brock Osweileruntil Brown is healthy."
Brown starting on the PUP list would be awful. Clark is good enough to serviceably protect the blind side, but that Brown is one of those true franchise tackles. Please stay healthy Derek Newton.
On the lighter side
Coverage units improving by Drew Dougherty, Houstontexans.com
"“If we have to punt the ball from the 50 yard line and we can down the ball inside the 10, then I think it’s just going to be hard to drive the ball 95, 90 yards on our defense,” O’Brien said. “I think that’s something we’re doing a good job with and we’ll have to continue to do a good job with it.”"
The Texans have won the field position battle in each of their first two preseason games. Against the Saints last Saturday night, they began on average at their own 32-yard line. New Orleans started their drives on average at their own 28. It was 27 to 22 in favor of the Texans the week prior against the 49ers.
Special teams were a weak area for the Texans in 2015, so improving there was needed. I knew Larry Izzo would whip those guys into shape.