Braxton Miller must prove himself when given another chance

DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 24: Wide receiver Braxton Miller
DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 24: Wide receiver Braxton Miller /

Houston Texans’ wide receiver Braxton Miller has been a healthy scratch in each of the last two weeks.

Houston Texans’ second-year wide receiver Braxton Miller simply can’t catch a break. He has gone from the starting quarterback in a major college program like The Ohio State University, to being an inactive wide receiver for the last two weeks in the NFL.

The former two-time Big Ten offensive player of the year and MVP in 2012-2013 has struggled to stay on the field.

Miller suffered a devastating shoulder injury in 2014 while in college that forced him to convert to wide receiver.

Miller showcased that he still has the athleticism to make the transition to wide receiver after making plays in the open field that made scouts and NFL evaluators drool.

Miller only solidified his status during Senior Bowl week in 2016 and was touted as one of the most impressive players throughout the draft process.

Heck, Miller had a solid workout during the NFL Combine. At 6-foot-1, he ran a 4.5 sec during the forty yard dash, and he posted an impressive 6.65 sec in the 3 cone drill.

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It was clear that Miller would have a steep learning curve, converting to the wide receiver position at the next level, but injuries have derailed his career early on.

Miller suffered a season-ending shoulder injury against the Green Bay Packers during his rookie year in 2016.

This year, Miller suffered an ankle sprain in the first pre-season game that kept him out for the remainder of the summer.

Personnel moves can make Miller’s return happen sooner than later

Miller’s biggest competition as a slot reciever was Jaelen Strong, but he was surprisingly released after his season debut against the Cincinnati Bengals back in week two.

Suddenly, Bruce Ellington came out of nowhere and offered the Texans a weapon downfield and a short to intermediate threat that can make defenders miss in the open field.

Texans’ running back Tyler Ervin showed some ability in the slot prior suffering a season-ending knee injury against the Tennessee Titans.

In many ways, Ellington and Ervin are what Texans’ head coach Bill O’Brien envisioned Miller could become for his offense.

Although with the injuries to Ervin and Jordan Todman, Miller has the opportunity to make the active roster as the starting kick returner on special teams.

It is too early to declare Miller a bust, and I think he will develop similar to fellow Ohio State alumnis and Washington Redskins wide receiver Terrelle Pryor.

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Pryor didn’t impress anyone when he first made the switch to wide receiver, but he is now a starter with the Washington Redskins.

Miller is too talented to stay off the field. He needs time on the field so he can continue his development as a wide receiver.

So any playing time will be a plus for Miller, and with the need of a valuable kick returner, he will need to make a difference.