A few players bounce back as the pads stay on for another day

11 observations from Texans training camp, July 28

@edclarke03/Eddie Clarke

If you missed the Saturday July 27 observations you can find them here

Good day for Tytus

Texans OL Tytus Howard at Training Camp 2019

@edclarke03/Eddie Clarke

Tytus Howard had a very nice day. He worked a lot with some of the veterans getting an off day. The most impressive rep was him stoning D.J. Reader and stopping the veteran defensive lineman cold in his tracks. He had some nice reps against other rushers too. He even earned a measure of revenge on Joel Heath after Heath won some reps in the first padded practice. He moved around really well too getting out and leading the charge on a few blocks.

Miller's the leader

Lamar Miller at Texans Training Camp 2019

@Cody_Stoots/Cody Stoots

Lamar Miller is the best running back in camp for the Texans and it isn't even close. That shouldn't surprise you. What may surprise you is this might be the best version of Lamar Miller the Texans have ever seen. Going into his third year in Houston last year Miller slimmed up a little. This year I would say he is trimmed up. Not smaller, but lighter was the way he spoke about his body. His level of scoot, if you will, is the best I have seen it.

Concerns about Foreman

​Running back D'Onta Foreman has done a great job getting his body ready for camp. He hasn't done a great job being a running back yet. He did not have a good drill when the backs were practicing pass blocking against defensive backs. He struggled and didn't even see any premier pass rushers while doing so. A few of his movements were sluggish. With a break coming up soon how he finishes the week will be something to monitor.

More Moore

A.J. Moore was singled out by head coach Bill O'Brien on Sunday as a player who is a special teams contributor and thouroughly relishes the opportunities. Well, Moore is getting it done on defense too. He has had a strong camp. Today while watching a blocking drill Moore came running by in our sight line with the ball. I was confused at first until I realized he had run a pick-six back from his drill down the field.

Pushing for a spot

Former Oklahoma State wideout Tyron Johnson had a really solid first day and then a couple of decent days. He was back to a good day today showcasing his various talents. He has a chance to force the Texans into keeping six wide receivers on this roster. He has strong hounds, is physical, and seems to pick things up with ease. It is worth noting, before ending up at Oklahoma State he was a five-star recruit who picked LSU.

Under the radar push up front

Carlos Watkins and Angelo Blackson had a few nice plays on Sunday. They are a part of a room that has some severe competition if you'd like to stick around the Texans. Albert Huggins who was at Clemson last year had a nice play that caught my eye as well. There is a lot of talent in the defensive line room. This could be one of the most competitive units on the team.

Not as Scharping

Offensive lineman Max Scharping had a day that left something to be desired. He struggled with extending his arms and really getting into defenders. One play it took him a second to establish his grip but once he got set and could plant he slowed the rusher down. Unfortunately for him he was deep into the pocket by then.

Watt a monster, just like we like it

J.J. Watt worked today but nothing looked like work for him. He took a few strolls to the QB or the dummy posing as the QB today. Veterans and rookies alike had no shot against Watt. This isn't shocking but just your reminder we are witnessing one of the all-time greats.

Gilly bounces back

Fullback Cullen Gillaspia had a much better day today in pads. He held his own in the individual blocking drills looking very strong. I was worried after Saturday where he looked a little over matched but he handled his challenges today in the drills well. When he gets to working against linemen and linebackers he will need every ounce of his being to make sure he nails the assignments on them. He did whiff on one block in a team play that should have been and easy one for him to finish but it was a much better day today for him. He is smooth running routes.

Play of the day

Jordan Akins and Deshaun Watson hooked up for two magnificent plays back-to-back. The first saw Akins sky into the air and rip down a Watson bullet with one hand to move the chains for a huge gain. The very next play Watson put it right on Akins and away from the defender for a score. It was an amazing throw both times, showcasing Watson's pinpoint accuracy.

Quote of the day

Karan Higdon at Texans Training Camp 2019

@edclarke03/Eddie Clarke

"It's wide open."

Texans Head Coach Bill O'Brien talking about the team's running back spots after Lamar Miller. There are a lot of names, and maybe even some not on the roster, to fill our the two spots behind Miller.

Most Popular

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome

Listen Live

ESPN Houston 97.5 FM
Bringing NIL deals to high schools will have some challenges. Photo via: Wiki Commons.

Name, image, and likeness, or NIL as it has been known, has been a hotly debated topic. When some states allowed college athletes to start getting paid through NIL deals, others had to follow suit. NIL deals basically allow athletes to get paid from endorsements and the like. They can make appearances, sign autographs, and get endorsements. No longer can schools make a king's ransom off the backs of these athletes without the athletes themselves benefitting from their popularity.

Sponsorships are also allowed, which started some of this years ago when Jeremy Bloom was a pro skier who also played college football at Colorado. Bloom wasn't allowed to have sponsorships, which was a HUGE part of his skiing career, if he wanted to continue to play college football. After fighting a losing battle when the NCAA declared him permanently ineligible, Bloom went on to compete in the 2006 Winter Olympics. He went on to have a couple short stints in the NFL, but his football career never materialized.

When a few states took the NIL law and opened it to high school student athletes, they REALLY opened a can of worms! Other states are now in full scramble mode trying to figure out how can they make this work, do they want to make this work, and wondering if this will open Pandora's Box. Newsflash: Pandora's Box has been open longer than your local grocery store chain. Schools have been paying for play ever since time began. SMU got the dreaded "Death Penalty" in the 80s behind it. Teams have seemingly had wink-wink agreements not to out one another. But high schools? This is a bit much.

AAU, club, and travel sports have had a shady undertone that's been more intense over the last 20 years or so. This is especially true in AAU basketball, where shoe companies and the like have long been "sponsors" of teams. Follow your favorite NBA player's career from high school to the league, then see what shoe company he signs with. I guarantee there's a pipeline in most cases straight from the sponsors of his AAU/high school team to his shoe deal.

Bringing NIL deals to high schools will have some challenges. For example: I heard this past weekend that a prominent high school player has an NIL deal in place with Bentley. What if said school sees a kid at another school, possibly in another state that may not have NIL deals for high schoolers. What's stopping said school from relocating this kid and family by offering them new jobs as well as an NIL deal? Private schools and charter schools aren't regulated like public schools. What's going to stop them from using funds to create a factory of college athletes by offering what other schools can't as far as NIL is concerned?

Here in Texas, football is king. Specifically, high school football. You can go to any town on a Friday night, and the local high school stadium is packed to the brim. If any of you think those towns won't band together to offer kids the best NIL deals they can in order to gain any advantage, you're crazy. States will need to hurry and approve this to stay competitive, but they'll also need to regulate it as best and as fast as they can to prevent a wild west scenario. I can see this getting out of hand quickly, but then some will step in to regulate it as soon as the scales no longer tilt in favor of the rich and powerful.

Texas is an oil rich state. New tech companies are moving here in droves because of the state tax laws. That's why the housing market is looking the way it is now. With the way high school football is like a religion here, imagine if NIL deals are allowed? What's stopping a powerhouse program from becoming invincible and cranking out 10-20 or more top tier D1 athletes from a single graduating class on a single team? We already see it with these human athlete factories masquerading as high schools.

I'm all for student athletes taking advantage of NIL. However, it has to be regulated. Why not have agents get trained and certified like pros do. Then also have them register in each state and pass a state certification, similar to the way lawyers or real estate agents have to. Now everyone is state and/or federally certified to help kids get what they can above board in NIL deals. This could've helped prevent Nick Saban's ignorant comments from last week by bringing much needed law and order to the wild west of NIL deals. Until it happens, we'll have to wait and see. In the meantime, I'll sit and watch the utter CHAOS (in my Khal voice)!

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome