Injuries in Houston Texans’ offensive line pose interesting questions moving forward
The Houston Texans have decisions to make in which offensive linemen they will bring to the final roster with injuries impacting their starting group.
The additions in the offseason combined with the current injuries at the Houston Texans offensive line are creating intense competition in the next three preseason games before they trim their roster for the start of the NFL regular season. The Texans are among the other 31 NFL teams that will have until 3:00 p.m. on August 31st to make their cuts and decide who makes the 53 man roster.
The offensive line will have a lot of interesting battles across the board with no real frontrunner to make the roster outside of their recent draft choices that include Martinas Rankin, Tytus Howard, and Max Scharping. Texans have Julién Davenport, Seantrel Henderson, Matt Kalil, and Roderick Johnson as the primary players competing to start at offensive tackle.
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Even with the intention of Howard and Scharping being the long term starters at tackle, they are getting reps at guard in their rookie year as they make the transition to the NFL level.
Texans will need to do their due diligence at the tackle position with Kalil and Henderson seeing very minimal action in the past seasons because of injuries. Meanwhile, Davenport and Johnson have both seen little action as mainly being reserves since entering the league.
In the interior line, Texans have a good problem on their hands with Howard and Scharping pushing Senio Kelemete and Zach Fulton for their starting spots at the guard spot.
With injuries to Nick Martin and Greg Mancz at the center position, Fulton is seeing snaps at center, where he proved to be a solid player for the Kansas City Chiefs. Kelemete, on the other hand, could be on his way out with the Texans opting to invest in their younger player in Rankin.
Fulton will be a player to monitor in the preseason as the Texans have struggled to find a consistent starting center with Mancz and Martin both showing upside, but struggling with health. Depending on how this season fares, there is a small possibility with Martin hitting free agency that Texans rely on Fulton at the center position since he has two more years under contract.
Although the tackle position remains a question mark for this season, the Texans have reinforced the interior of their offensive line and have the opportunity to improve after playing a role in surrendering 62 sacks in 2018.