Division: AFC South
Rd 1, Pick 26 – DE Whitney Mercilus from Illinois
Rd 3, Pick 5 (68) (From Buccaneers) – WR DeVier Posey from Ohio St.
Rd 3, Pick 13 (76) (From Eagles) – G Brandon Brooks from Miami (OH)
Rd 4, Pick 4 (99) (From Buccaneers through Eagles) – C Ben Jones from Georgia
Rd 4, Pick 26 (121) – WR Keshawn Martin from Michigan St.
Rd 4, Pick 31 (126) (From Patriots through Broncos and Buccaneers) – DT Jared Crick from Nebraska
Rd 5, Pick 26 (161) – K Randy Bullock from Texas A&M
Rd 6, Pick 25 (195) – OT Nick Mondek from Purdue
Free Agent Acquisitions:
LB: Bradie James
K: Shayne Graham
QB: John Beck
RB: Justin Forsett
RB: Arian Foster
LB: Tim Dobbins
DB: Quintin Demps
C: Chris Myers
LS: Jon Weeks
K: Donnie Jones
DB: Alan Ball
DE: Mario Williams (to Buffalo Bills)
LB: DeMeco Ryans (to Philadelphia Eagles)
T: Eric Winston (to Kansas City Chiefs)
WR: Jacoby Jones (to Baltimore Ravens)
DB: Jason Allen (to Cincinnati Bengals)
RB: Lawrence Vickers (to Dallas Cowboys)
QB: Matt Leinart (to Oakland Raiders)
2011 Record: 10-6
Team Averages for 2011
2012 Projected Record: 10-6 or 11-5
Evaluation: The Houston Texans had a great 2011 season. They made the playoffs for the first time with then rookie quarterback, TJ Yates. Although a lot of what got them there was a great run game and an aggressive attacking defensive which was run by defensive coordinator Wade Phillips and a run attack led by Arian Foster; it takes nothing away from Yates who also delivered on his part as well. As a Chargers fan, I loved watching the Texans defense play because the Chargers used to have that attack back when Phillips was the Chargers Defensive Coordinator a couple years ago. Wade has transformed the defense last season to be one of the league’s best.
Though, now that the 2011 season is over the Texans have lost some key players in that defense this offseason in Mario Williams, DeMeco Ryans, and Jason Allen. To fill these spots the Texans went out and got Whitney Mercilus in the 2012 draft and signed Bradie James from the Dallas Cowboys. Also the players next in line Brooks Reed and Darryl Sharpton will also step up this upcoming season. Along with defensive standout J.J. Watt at the forefront the Texans are just poised to reload on the defensive front with the current defensive players on the roster with the resigning of Alan Ball, Quintin Demps, and Tim Dobbins. Also, with the addition of rookie Defensive tackle Jared Crick.
The Texans also re-signed a very important part on the offensive side of the ball in running back Arian Foster to a long-term deal. Which was well deserved after the season he had, along with the great offensive line to open all those running lanes for foster. The Texans also re-signed another important part of that running attack in center Chris Myers. The team also picked up some solid offensive line players to add depth to the strong line in this year’s draft with Brandon Brooks, C Ben Jones, and Nick Mondek. The team also signed another running back to their back field with Justin Forsett.
On the outside, the team picked up two wide receivers in this year’s draft to hopefully add another weapon to the great receivers’ the team already has in Kevin Walter, Owen Daniels, and of course Andre Johnshon. With the loss of wide receiver Jacoby Jones rookie wideouts DeVier Posey from Ohio St. and Keshawn Martin from Michigan St. will be called upon to come in as another weapon in the receiving core With Keshawn Martin’s ability to make big yards after the catch and also for him to add a new weapon in the special teams kick return game.
Now, I think the Texans will for sure be back in the playoffs this upcoming season and have another great season to win their division. Two of the team’s key players will be ones to watch for sure as they are every season in quarterback Matt Schaub and pro bowl wide receiver Andre Johnson. I think all Texans fans – as well as all football fans – will keep an eye on these two as they have had multiple surgeries. Johnson had his third surgery with surgery on his knee recently and has also had hamstring surgery which cost him to miss nine games in 2011. Johnson also had ankle surgery before the start of last season. Though he and the team says he will be ready for the season it will be a thing to watch if he re- aggravates any of those injuries this season and if he’ll miss a good portion of some games. Although I know Johnson will tough it out if any of those flare up and make some great plays this season.
Schaub will also need to be more durable this season and try and make it through a full season this season with him still recovering from a foot injury he suffered last season. If these two can stay healthy this season the Texans will look to do some major damage in their division now that Manning is no longer in the division. Even if they miss a couple games the Texans will be fine with the players and coaches they have on this team. This team is fun to watch and is filled with playmakers. Look for another strong season from the Texans this season!