DESHAUN WATSON SHOWING TREMENDOUS ACCURACY

11 observations from Texans training camp, July 29

Photo by @edclarke03/Eddie Clarke.

If you missed the coverage from Sunday July 28 you can find it here

Justin Reid returns

The second year safety was back out for the Texans after missing a few days. It is likely Reid would have been ready, but he was hit by a drunk driver while driving before camp started. He mentioned the team was being cautious with him by not having him start camp active. His wrist still has a cast, but he said after practice that was a precautionary situation.

One handed no problem

Justin Reid found himself with an interception on a target that seemed to be intended for Keke Coutee. The young safety was all over the field as the Texans like to move him and fellow safety Tashaun Gipson around. Reid has frequently heaped praise on Gipson and every time sounds excited to play with the veteran.

Watson whipping it

Deshaun Watson can sling it, and he is better than he has ever been throwing the ball. Sometimes in previous camps he had missed a spot here or there. Misses are the rarest of rare and his decision-making is better than we have seen. He finds the open man. No locking in on one player.

The other tight ends

Jerell Adams has had a very nice past two days for the Texans. The once highly touted prospect came to camp as an afterthought but as opportunities have presented themselves he has made big play after big play. His hands look really solid and though he has a long long road ahead and needs some luck to make the team, he is helping his chance to stay in the league.

Darren Fells is the best blocking tight end on the team. That's why he is here, not to catch. That being said he made up for some disappointing receiving performances the past couple days. He had a couple of nice snags today and one late in the workout Sunday.

Henderson solidifying

Right tackle Seantrell Henderson was a player, despite his history, I believed in coming into last season. Then he was lost for the year in game one. With hopefully a full camp ahead of him, Henderson seems to be the favorite for the right tackle spot. He had a couple of rough reps against J.J. Watt today but found himself a victory before the day was over against Watt. Not saying Henderson can't be caught at right tackle, but he's in the lead now.

Paying for your mistakes

Tytus Howard had a false start today and was then shown to the sidelines for the mistake. Hard to tell on Howard's overall performance today, but he held his own on more than a few snaps. He's not struggling regularly which is a good sign.

Watson magic

In some situational work for the team today Deshaun Watson's Houdini-like powers were at work again. The offense needed a first down and after surveying the field for a moment or two Watson took off rushing for the 16 yards needed to get the first down. Nobody was anywhere close to him. Now, would J.J. Watt have annihilated Deshaun Watson and stopped the play dead if it was a live rep? Probably. Can he do that in practice? No. We will call it a draw ultimately.

Tyron Johnson continues to push

"13 big play" is something I frequently write in my little notebook while watching practice. He hauled in a touchdown catch in team drills today. When the team is far away and the offense makes a lot of noise and signals touchdown we frequently ask "who caught that?" It is quickly answered when Johnson comes running out of the end zone with the ball tossing it to the coaches.

Veteran factor at running back

Taiwan Jones would make this team if the cuts were tomorrow. The ninth year veteran has actually played running back sparingly in his time in the NFL. He has just 44 rush attempts in his career and just once since 2016. But he's a special teams contributor at a high level, and played for the Texans special teams coordinator Brad Seely. Well, he might have matched half his career total in rushes the past couple of days. He can also catch the ball too. Jones is a threat to beat out young players for a spot.

Play of the day

Will Fuller skied for a pass, contorted his body sideways, landed on both feet, and kept running. It was smooth, seamless, and frankly looked easy for him.

Quote of the day

"Different strokes for different folks...with all those running backs with the exception of Lamar (Miller) it's special teams. Where are they on special teams? What type of effort do they give? When you watch guys like Taiwan Jones, Josh Ferguson, (Karan) Higdon, (Damarea) Crockett, and you see the effort they give on special teams that goes a long way. (Cullen) Gillaspia, obviously at fullback. That's a big part of it too."

When asked about what he is looking for in a backup running back Bill O'Brien mentioned each running back by name except for D'Onta Foreman and Buddy Howell.

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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.

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