The last solo work before the Lions get to town

11 observations from Texans training camp for Aug. 12

@EdClarke03/Eddie Clarke

Jordan Thomas Returns

@EdClarke03/Eddie Clarke

Jordan Thomas made his return to the field today after missing quite a few dates with an injury. He looked a little rusty but he was athletic in a near one-handed grab in the end zone. He has some catching up to do. He's clearly behind Jordan Akins and Darren Fells has situations where he is more useful.

Deshaun on the move

Good thing the Texans have a quarterback that can move. Watson was running for his life on a couple of plays today. His ability to throw and move is fantastic and he is making better decisions on when to take off. It will be interesting to see if he can translate this to the regular season. If so some of the concerns about his injuries can go away.

Henderson holding up

Seantrell Henderson had more wins over J.J. Watt than I have ever seen in camp. Henderson fought Watt to a tie a few times and held up the Texans excellent pass rusher a couple of times. I feel much better about Henderson than most members of the line. I, of course, was high on him before last season too. The only concern here is health.

Kalil's day off presents opportunity

Matt Kalil seemingly got a veteran day off on Monday for the Texans. With him out Roderick Johnson and JuliƩn Davenport worked the majority of time at left tackle in Kalil's absence. If either player stood out there is a chance Kalil would be out of a job. They have a long way to go before they could supplant Kalil. This is a big week for Kalil to keep his spot at left tackle.

Welcome back Mr. Carter

DeAndre Carter is a breath of fresh air. He can do almost everything Keke Coutee can do from the slot and won more than a few reps today. There was a play where he absolutely worked the defensive back and quarterback Jordan Ta'amu missed him much to the chagrin of some coaches who pointed out Carter's win.

Tyron Johnson's roles

Tyron Johnson got some work in the return game and one of the biggest things is he doesn't miss reps. Luck has been on Johnson's side with health and he's been getting plenty of good work in. He had an amazing catch today with Deante Burton in coverage. He used his off hand to keep Burton at bay and came down with a very nice catch with Burton right there.

Fulton a man of many talents

Zach Fulton is playing center while Nick Martin and Greg Mancz deal with injuries. Fulton filled in at center in 2017 for the Chiefs. I wouldn't be shocked if he is actually the best center on the team. With him at center there has been plenty of work for Max Scharping at guard and the rookie has been paying off on those opportunities.

Gillaspia's fingertip catch

Fullback Cullen Gillaspia had a catch today that was again impressive in his ability to do those things. It looked like it was out of his reach but he was able to haul it in and beat his man to the front of the end zone for a touchdown. His ability to haul in passes has impressed me and while I was high on that aspect of his game he's got more potential there than I realized.

Crowded room for Johnnie Dixon

Johnnie Dixon hasn't had a bad camp but by comparison to others he hasn't stood out. He has a lot of physical gifts and his quickness is certainly an asset. He had a probable fumble in a drill today that got the defense excited. There have been others who have shined brighter but I think there's something there, maybe just not for the Texans.

Play of the day

Tyron Johnson coming down with the ball in coverage or Cullen Gillaspia's fingertip snag.

Quote of the day

"I'm still having fun."

Texans defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel who has no plans of slowing down approaching his 37th season in the NFL. Crennel has a tall task this season but hopefully his experience can cover up some of the potential shortcomings on the team. Also, I imagine if the defense didn't look good this season he would be coaching year 38 in the NFL somewhere else.

Most Popular

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome

Listen Live

Texans fall to Browns. Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images.

The Houston Texans kept it closer than the experts thought they would, but couldn't pull out a victory. Here are 11 observations from the loss in Cleveland to the Browns.

1. The game looks totally different if Texans quarterback Tyrod Taylor finishes the game. Taylor left at halftime with a hamstring injury. He was playing exceptionally well against his former team. Taylor is not expected to play Thursday according to NFL Network.

2. Davis Mills had a rocky NFL debut which was to be expected. Mills looked to have the wrong elements of a few plays. He also couldn't hit backup wideout Andre Roberts over the middle and threw an interception. It was a fine performance considering what Mills showed he could do in the preseason.

3. Mills didn't work with a full load of offensive weapons in the second half. Rookie wideout Nico Collins didn't return to the game after his lone catch and big run early in the game. Veteran slot receiver Danny Amendola left the game with an injury. Tight end Anthony Auclair left with an eye injury. The Texans entered the game without wide receiver Anthony Miller who was inactive.

4. Brandin Cooks is a monster through two games. He is the most dangerous skill position player on the team, and defenses still have trouble covering him and staying with him. Cooks turned in yet another impressive day for this team and hauled in a Davis Mills touchdown pass.

5. The Browns did a solid job against the ground game of the Texans. Mark Ingram averaged under three yards per carry and Tyrod Taylor was the only rusher to have a big play on the ground. This led to a fair number of third-and-long situations which the Texans usually had trouble converting.

6. Justin Reid was set to increase his payday on his next contract with his early play. Reid forced a fumble and had an interception in the first half. Unfortunately, Reid would leave the game multiple times with injuries. The knock on Reid has always been his health.

7. The Texans were worn down by the Browns rushing attack all day. Once Cleveland committed to the run they saw the success of their work culminating in a 26-yard scamper by Nick Chubb for a touchdown. The Browns didn't run as much as I excepted them to run early.

8. Tim Kelly had another nice day calling plays. Kelly remains creative in finding ways to get the ball out of Taylor's hands quickly as well as manufacturing matchups where the Texans can win and pick up yards. He even got creative to get Davis Mills a passing touchdown late in the game. Kelly has been very impressive through two games.

9. Andre Roberts was inexcusably bad today. The Texans defense held on the opening drive and his muffed punt eliminated the momentum from the defensive stand. He also had poor returns on kickoffs. His lone job is to be a solid returner, and he failed at that on Sunday.

10. David Culley had a head-scratching decision foregoing an offsides call on a third down. The head coach opted for the result of the third down, and a punt on fourth down, instead of another third down. He did not explain himself well postgame on the decision either.

11. The Texans hung tough and should feel solid about where they could have been without the injury to their quarterback. With no Taylor in the short week, it will not be easy to beat the Panthers who upset the Saints on Sunday.

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome