The Houston Texans need to make sure they don’t overwork their running backs.
Having a 17-game schedule for the first time for the Houston Texans and the rest of the NFL, one of the more intriguing parts of any team, especially the Texans, is the workload of running backs throughout the season.
That was a topic of discussion for Houston Texans head coach David Culley in a press conference on Tuesday after making decisions to keep five running backs on the initial 53-man roster. Those running backs are David Johnson, Mark Ingram II, Phillip Lindsay, Scottie Phillips and Rex Burkhead.
In the press conference, Culley said the following in comments provided by Houston Texans PR:
"“It’s very important because of the durability. You know we kind of want our physicality and to be a power running team as well as a zone running team and we are fortunate to have guys on our team that fit that mold and its very important.”"
There are a few one-year contracts on the depth chart, but if a player like Johnson or Lindsay can prove they are still difference makers, who knows what would happen with their careers. Both of these players are former 1,000-yard rushers, which is the gold standard for a running back season, and both still have some solid years ahead of them.
With Ingram, he’s so great to have on this roster, especially in a 17-game season. He can be a running back who not only is the veteran presence, but he can give the younger backs a break in games, meaning he’ll take away some of their carries away in their pursuit of being 1,000-yard rushers.
Ingram is a pro’s pro, so all Houston Texans fans should feel very lucky to have Ingram on the roster because he’ll not only be productive on the field, but he can really help out the rest of the depth chart because he’s seen it all and been very successful for a long period of time in the league.
Houston Texans: Scottie Phillips and Rex Burkhead can be sleepers on this roster
Two of the more underrated non-cuts were Phillips and Burkhead. Phillips is an excellent young running back to have on the roster with Phillips having untapped potential, and Burkhead can not only make the occasional big play for a first down, but he can block, and he’s nice to have in goal line situations.
Burkhead has played for multiple teams in his career and always manages to make a NFL roster because he’s a excellent pro and can always be counted on. Having him in terms of durability will do wonders for the Texans, because Burkhead can help the Houston Texans with the tough yardage.
Back to Phillips, don’t forget with the extra game he can play a role to give others a break in games with carries, and maybe even be available for passes out of the backfield when Week 1 arrives.
Though we are not completely sure how the Houston Texans running back depth chart will turn out in ’21, that is what makes this game so much fun to watch. The running backs of the Texans maybe can surprise their opponents, because the feeling here is the backs will be carrying the offense this season.