3 factors to watch against the Jacksonville Jaguars
By Jair Lopez
DeAndre Hopkins and the rest of the receivers
The Houston Texans will be entering an interesting Week 17 with DeAndre Hopkins as the only receiver to have vast experience in the NFL and have more than one season in the Texans offense. The other receivers are Keke Coutee, DeAndre Carter, Vyncint Smith, and Steven Mitchell. Coutee has been an impact receiver as a rookie but he has missed significant time this season due to nagging hamstring injuries. Coutee’s status is still up in the air against the Jaguars, but if the decision is too close to call the Texans will play it safe as they would prefer to have him in the playoffs.
Carter was claimed by the Texans from the Philadelphia Eagles during the bye week as they searched for depth at the slot receiver position with Coutee’s injury situation. Carter came into the league undrafted in 2015, but he bounced around from team to team and didn’t see any action in the regular season until this season. He was the Eagles’ returner on special teams.
Smith and Mitchell are both rookies that went undrafted, Smith made the 53 man roster with the Texans, but he spent the majority of the time inactive or playing on special teams. Meanwhile, Mitchell signed with the Los Angeles Rams after going undrafted and spent the majority of time on their practice squad.
However, he was released from the Rams and signed to the Texans practice squad prior to Week 9. Mitchell was recently promoted to the active roster after Demaryius Thomas was put on IR due to a season-ending Achilles injury. This game will serve as a valuable opportunity for Deshaun Watson to establish some rapport with his receivers prior to the start of the playoffs.