The Houston Texans wrapped up their third and final session of OTAs this past week and were able to exhale after they survived two injury scares during the ‘no contact’ offseason practices. Every NFL team’s worst nightmare is to see a player go down with a serious injury this time of the year. The Texans dodged that scenario when two of their most indespensible players on offense, RB Arian Foster and LT Duane Brown, sustained relatively ‘minor’ injuries during the OTA period.
Foster sustained a strained calf muscle during the second OTA session. The injury sidelined him for the remainder of OTAs, but he will be good to go when training camp kicks off on July 26. Brown had minor surgery last week to shave a bone spur in his ankle; he will also be ready for the start of camp. It had been bothersome for him last week, so the team decided to get it taken care of now. Texans coach Gary Kubiak said, “It’s a minor procedure. He’s fine. We just want to make sure it’s something that’s not a problem when we go to camp, so we decided to do it.”
Brown and Foster were the only two injury situations that popped up during OTAs. Of course, Houston has several other players who have been rehabbing from offseason surgery or injuries sustained last season. Some of them will be ready for the start of camp, while the goal for others is to be ready for the start of the regular season. Two of those players who will be ready for camp, Derek Newton and rookie third-round draft pick Brennan Williams, will be in a battle for the starting right tackle spot. Both missed OTAs with knee injuries. Newton had offseason patellar tendon surgery and Williams tweaked his knee during rookie mini-camp in May.
Newton will look to hold off Williams and retain his starting spot, so it will benefit both players to be on the field from day one of camp. About his two right tackles, Kubiak said, “Newton is going to be healthy. He’s going to be ready for camp. Williams is going to be ready for camp. The competition is there, the answers are there, but we have to get them out here. The fact that those guys are in place and everybody is going to be ready to go on the 25th (of July), that makes me feel good.”
Two players who tore their achilles last season, WR DeVier Posey and DE Tim Jamison, are progressing well. Jamison sustained his injury in week six of 2012, and there is a good chance that he’ll also be ready for the start of camp. Posey suffered his injury in the playoff loss to the New England Patriots this past Jan., so his recovery is not as far along. He won’t be practicing, but Posey expects to be able to do on-field rehabilitation with the Texans’ training staff next week. He said Monday that he’s eyeing a return in Sep. or Oct. and may start the season on the PUP list, which will require him to be inactive the first six weeks of the regular season.
While Houston would be happy to have Posey by midseason, they are hoping to have two of their defensive stalwarts, LB Brian Cushing and FS Ed Reed, for Week 1. Cushing is on schedule in his recovery from a torn ACL he suffered in Week 5 last season. He is targeting the start of training camp to return to the field, but look for the Texans to take it easy with him in camp in an effort to make sure he is 100 percent ready for the season opener. Reed has been rehabbing in Atlanta from offseason hip surgery and will join the team in Houston this week for mini-camp. However, he will be on the sideline with all of the other veterans, as the Texans will use this three-day mini-camp to get the young guys work. The goal for Reed is also to be ready for Week 1, so it is likely he may not do much in training camp also.