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How Texans Rookie Tank Dell's Jaguars Performance Furthers Potential

A second straight outing with a touchdown and third straight with increasing receiving stats has taken Texans rookie Tank Dell from underrated to nationally known — and he isn't showing signs of slowing down.
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When a hometown rookie out of the University of Houston was drafted with the 69th overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, only a select few people knew his true potential. 

Houston Texans coach DeMeco Ryans and general manager Nick Caserio certainly did, to name a couple, but aside from his teammates and coaches at Houston who'd watched the 23-year-old put in work ahead of his hopeful NFL debut, not many others truly saw Tank Dell's promise. 

If any other team had the 69th selection, Dell likely wouldn't have heard his name called ... at least not with that pick. But luckily for him — and the Texans — Houston controlled the fifth pick of the third round. 

And for them, Dell was a great fit. He was from the city and had a chip on his shoulder.

That's still the case following Dell's third-ever professional appearance and second straight game with a touchdown, but there does remain a key difference: 

His name is now known across the country ... and people are beginning to realize his potential. 

Tank Dell

"It's cool to watch Tank," Ryans said following the Texans' 37-17 victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars. "Just every week, he shows up. He puts the work in. Explosive playmaker since OTAs. It's still showing up right now in the season.

"We're happy where Tank is."

Sunday afternoon, the Houston rookie showed out, reeling in a C.J. Stroud touchdown for the second straight game. 

By the time the Texans had secured their first victory of the season, Dell had registered five receptions on seven targets and 145 receiving yards — a first for him. 

The highlight from the Texans' win came on a 68-yard connection from Stroud to Dell, which ended in the pair's newly donned "Cali dance." 

"That was our first time taking a shot, and our first time hitting it," Stroud said. "I think that just shows the connection me and him actually have. We put in a lot of extra work. It's good to see it pay off, and now it's time to go do it again."

Dell's performance marks not only the second straight outing with a touchdown but also the third straight with three receptions or more — and the third straight week of improving in both receptions and total receiving yards. 

The rookie has not only put in work week in and week out, as Ryans would tell you, but the work has paid off on the field, which in turn became a Houston victory. 

So far this season, finding victories hasn't been easy for the Texans, especially with key injuries piling onto an already inexperienced squad, but that's what makes Dell's impact even more important. 

His ability to help the offense isn't being taken lightly. Not by the Texans, not by Stroud, and certainly not by himself. But after three straight games of showing what he's capable of, the same can be said about NFL fans across the country. 

Tank Dell truly does have sky-high potential. Now, that's truly being recognized.