With less than a week left of the pre-season, the Houston Texans continue to build their roster. Last week there were a few problem spots on the roster including depth running back, cornerback, and offensive tackle. The Texans crossed off two from that problem list with the return of rookie offensive tackle Martinas Rankin and signing free agent cornerback Kayvon Webster.
Here is the third version of our roster prediction heading into the final preseason game on Thursday against the Dallas Cowboys.
QB Deshaun Watson, Brandon Weeden, Joe Webb
This group stays the same and Joe Webb keeps his spot. Webb has shown to be able to help at quarterback and special teams but he can help out the wide receiver group in a pinch if need be. The veteran quarterback has a chance to be active every week of the season.
RB Lamar Miller, Troymaine Pope, Alfred Blue, Tyler Ervin, Jay Prosch
Change: Jay Prosch (IN)
The more we think about it, Bill O’Brien is not going without a fullback back despite his best efforts to use tight ends to fill that void so Jay Prosch is back in. D’Onta Foreman’s status is still up in the air and it will be known soon enough where he sits health wise when rosters are due. Tyler Ervin has been quiet all preseason but the Texans value his return skills, being a 3rd down back and ability to play out of the slot.
TE Ryan Griffin, Jordan Thomas, Jordan Akins
Same group since the start of roster predictions.
WR DeAndre Hopkins, Will Fuller, Keke Coutee, Braxton Miller, Sammie Coates
Change: Bruce Ellington (Out)
Bruce Ellington is removed from the roster due to numbers in other places, they have to have numbers in other places of the roster. Keke Coutee has to play catchup in a hurry plus he was the starter when OTAs and camp started. Sure he has missed time but if he is healthy he will cut into Ellington’s time on the field. If that is the case, it is just better to move on to Coutee with Braxton Miller as the back up slot. Will Fuller is on the mend but the bigger thing is that Joe Webb can fill in a pinch at wide receiver for this group.
OT Seantreal Henderson, Julién Davenport, Chad Slade, Martinas Rankin
OG Zach Fulton, Senio Kelemete, Greg Mancz, David Quessenberry
Change: David Quessenberry (In), Kyle Fuller (Out)
David Quessenberry has done plenty to solid his spot on the offensive line and even played both guard positions this last preseason game. Greg Mancz remains the back up center while Chade Slade can help at both guard and tackle. Martinas Rankin is back and healthy and showed his versatility to play both tackle and guard. Rankin needs work to understand the offense and the speed of the NFL game but it was a decent showing and the swing tackle for now.
Jon Weeks, Ka’imi Fairbairn, Shane Lechler
As much as Trevor Daniel has done to threaten Shane Lechler for his job, it is hard to think that the change it coming. Still, to this point, anything is possible.
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In four NFL seasons, Fairbairn has made 104 of 123 field goals (84.6 percent) and 148 of 161 extra points (91.9 percent).
NT D.J. Reader, Brandon Dunn
DL J.J. Watt, Christian Covington, Angelo Blackson, Carlos Watkins
Joel Heath remains the best option to jump into this group but this is a good issue for the defense to have this type of depth. Maybe the Texans look to trade someone not named J.J. Watt, Christian Covington, D.J. Reader or Brandon Dunn. With teams searching to fill their rosters, maybe there is a deal out there for the Texans they would like. They don’t lose value for players that could be lost for nothing if waived.
OLB Whitney Mercilus, Jadeveon Clowney, Brennan Scarlett, Duke Ejiofor
Same group from the start and one of the stronger position groups for the Texans.
ILB Benardrick McKinney, Zach Cunningham, Dylan Cole, Josh Keyes, Brian Peters
Change: Kennan Gilchrist (Out)
Ben Heeney returned and the Texans put him back on the field to see how he worked both defensively and on special teams. Heeney is a threat to unseat Josh Keyes at the linebacker spot and give them a similar group to last season.
CB Johnathan Joseph, Kevin Johnson, Aaron Colvin, Johnson Bademosi, Kayvon Webster
Change: Dee Virgin (Out)
The Texans signed Kayvon Webster and it is not to fight for a roster spot either. Webster will be used as depth behind the top three cornerbacks and help on special teams. Coming off an achilles injury from last year, Webster had a successful workout to land a contract. The addition of Webster pushes out Dee Virgin but even more importantly is what the team decides to do with rookie Andre Chachere. Chachere has had a strong preseason and camp showing he can help both on the inside and outside of the defense.
S Tyrann Mathieu, Kareem Jackson, Justin Reid, Kurtis Drummond, Corey Moore
Change: Treston Decoud (Out), Corey Moore (In)
It is hard to feel good about Treston Decoud and if he sticks long term on the roster. Both Kurtis Drummond and Corey Moore have had better camps and preseasons than the younger Decoud.
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