The Houston Texans have made several moves in free agency that are beginning to focus in on the vision they are trying to create on offense.
Houston has signed veterans including Robert Woods, Jimmie Ward, Dalton Schultz, Devin Singletary and Case Keenum so far. One of the first things head coach DeMeco Ryans said was his goal for the entire team is to be an attack-first, aggressive program, and that includes on offense.
The signings of Woods, Schultz, fullback Andrew Beck and running backs Singletary and Mike Boone are early indicators aligning with Ryans’ philosophy. In order to be aggressive on offense, Houston needs to have a strong offensive line, but it also has to have great blockers and assertive runners all over the field.
Woods and Schultz have proven with their previous teams they are more than capable of being above-average blockers. Texans fans have first-hand experience with Singletary and his running style, and they already have Dameon Pierce, who has proven he is more than capable of being a punisher out of the backfield.
With the signing of Beck, it also adds an extra layer of versatility for Houston. The San Francisco, Shanahan style is predicated on making every play — whether it be a run or a pass — look as similar as possible.
The 49ers utilized fullback Kyle Juszczyk as a lead blocker, an occasional runner and even as a pass-game threat in the red zone. Beck could be utilized in a similar capacity.
The same can be said for Schultz, who’s caught 57 or more passes in the past three seasons. Woods outside of the trenches is a good lead blocker on potential outside runs too.
With an influx of rookies set to join after the NFL Draft, general manager Nick Caserio is positioning the team to have a great balance between veterans and first-year players. An example is with Keenum, who fits right with Ryans’ aggressive mindset.
It is expected Houston will take a quarterback with its No. 2 overall pick in the draft. Keenum is an experienced veteran that has played every role as a quarterback — from backup to starter. Woods replaces Brandin Cooks as a veteran to lead the receivers room, and Singletary is another key presence with the running backs.
With the mix of age, experience and different roles from the players Houston has signed so far, it is another remark from Ryans’ introductory news conference coming true. Which was to add diversity, in terms of different NFL backgrounds on the team in all different kinds of ways, to the Texans.