Houston Texans 2018 : 10 players who can improve team

Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images
Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images /
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BALTIMORE, MD – NOVEMBER 27: Defensive End D.J. Reader
BALTIMORE, MD – NOVEMBER 27: Defensive End D.J. Reader /

D.J. Reader

An unsung hero in the Texans defense, D.J. Reader was a steal in the third day of the 2016 NFL Draft. He played all but the last two games last season before being placed on the injured reserve for a knee injury. Sitting and learning from former Texan nose tackle Vince Wilfork certainly did wonders for his early success with the team.

His short area quickness is impressive for a player of his size. At 300-plus pounds, his pursuit in the open field to tackle running backs on short passes was amazing to watch. D.J. Reader simply does everything that is asked of him.

Reader plays an integral role on this team – he takes up blocks that generate free running lanes for linebackers to create havoc in the backfield. Bernardrick McKinney and Zach Cunningham benefitted from Reader’s leap in 2017. In14 games, he ended with a season-high 47 tackles and one sack. In a rather disappointing season, Reader was a bright spot in the Texans defense.

With Watt returning back to health and Romeo Crennel assuming the job as the Texans defensive coordinator again, Reader really has the opportunity to not only to be one of the best players on the roster, but also at his position.