Houston Texans Dream Team: All-Time Starting Lineup

J.J. Watt Houston Texans (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
J.J. Watt Houston Texans (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /
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Mario Williams, Houston Texans
Mario Williams Houston Texans (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

Houston Texans: Defensive Line

DE: J.J. Watt — Being a three-time Defensive Player of the Year, while adding nearly 100 career sacks through the 2019 season, the first nine years of the career of J.J. Watt have made him the greatest player in Texans history. Watt is still adding to his career numbers, and though he’s battled with some injuries throughout his career, there has never been a better pass rusher to wear the Texans uniform.

J.J. Watt currently has collected 96 sacks, 54 passes defensed, 15 fumble recoveries, 158 TFL, 265 QB hits and 373 solo tackles. An entire section could be written about Watt, as he’s also been selected to five Pro Bowls, is a five-time first-team All-Pro and was named to the Pro Football Hall of Fame All-2010s team.

DT: Antonio Smith — Here me out on this selection. After some discussion among the Toro Times staff, we decided Antonio Smith needed to be on the starting defensive line, and at the end of his career in Oakland he played the position.

While with the Texans, Smith was a defensive end, but he’s also an underrated player who deserves his due, so he’s in this starting lineup alongside J.J. Watt. While with the Texans, Smith played from 2009-13 with the Texans and then returned in 2016 for his final NFL season. In all, Smith played six seasons with the Texans, a total of 92 games where he made 78 starts on the defensive line. Smith forced seven fumbles in his Texans career, and not only that, what also stands out is the fact he had eight passes defensed.

Also while with the Texans, Smith had three fumble recoveries, 27.5 sacks, 116 solo tackles, 38 tackles for loss and 98 QB hits, including 22 of those QB hits coming in 2010. Smith made the Pro Bowl in 2011 with the Texans.

DE: Mario Williams — The No. 1 overall draft pick back in 2006, Mario Williams played a total of six years with the Houston Texans, and for the most part his career was solid with the franchise, putting him on the starting defensive line in the all-time lineup.

Williams made 13 to 16 starts with the Texans from 2003-10, and in his final season with the Houston Texans in 2011, injuries kept Williams to just five games played, all starts. Williams played in a total of 82 games with the Texans, and though there are some who believe he could have brought more to the Texans — which there could be an arguable case — overall Williams had some nice numbers with the team.

For his Texans career, Williams totaled 11 passes defensed, 11 forced fumbles and 53 sacks, which is an average of 9.3 sacks per season as he’s second all-time in franchise history in total sacks. Williams also finished with 64 TFL with the Texans and had 93 QB hits as he made two Pro Bowls with the team.