The Houston Texans ended their preseason Thursday night against the Dallas Cowboys, and most NFL fans saw what they expected — two teams resting their starters and letting the guys on the bubble get a few more chances to wow ownership and the coaches.
Quite a few players had great performances and helped cement their places on the final 53-man roster. DeVier Posey proved Thursday night that his Achilles rupture is healed, and he’s ready to come back and be a third or fourth option for Matt Schaub and the Texans’ passing game. He caught two passes for 18 yards and was overjoyed to be back on the field.
“When you put the pads on and strap the helmet on, you’re all amped up, and you’re like, ‘Dang. I miss this. I miss this.’ It’s been probably one of the happiest days of 2013 for me, man,” said Posey, who played in 11 games during his rookie season, catching six passes for 87 yards.
Another receiver with something to prove after Alan Bonner went down with an injury is Andy Cruse. He’s seen limited action, but did catch three passes, including a 21-yard touchdown pass, in this game. Cruse is still likely to get cut, as he’s an undrafted rookie, but if he continues to play well he could make a team’s practice squad and maybe “Rudy” his way up from there.
We all know that Ryan Griffin has pretty much made the team, but even so he went and showed us how much he can do with five catches for 87 yards.
Defensive end Keith Browner was a part of two sacks Thursday night, showing that he was worth being signed as a rookie free agent last year.
Other players have had several chances to prove themselves this preseason, and so far I’d say there’s about a 75 percent chance that they’ll make the roster. But they didn’t help themselves Thursday night either.
A.J. Bouye had some good moments Thursday night and some bad. He made a fourth-quarter interception but also celebrated way too much by “pulling a T.O.” and celebrating on the Cowboys’ famous star logo in the middle of the field. This cost the Texans 15 yards with an excessive celebration penalty, and Bouye got majorly chewed out by Wade Phillips. He didn’t hurt his chances to make the roster in this game, but he certainly didn’t help either.
Offensive tackle David Quessenberry, who is a 2013 sixth-round draft pick, struggled a little Thursday. He got called for holding once. Quessenberry has been seeing more playing time than expected with the Wade Smith injury.
A few unlucky players probably cost themselves jobs in the NFL with their performances tonight. Most notable in this group is running back Dennis Johnson, who many thought was the answer for who was the third-string slot behind Arian Foster and Ben Tate. He’s fumbled a few times over the course of the preseason, which is something Gary Kubiak is not a fan of. Johnson really hurt himself by fumbling again tonight, and it also happened to be the only turnover the Texans had.
The full 53-man roster will be finalized at 5:00 p.m. CT on Saturday. You can expect players like Griffin, D. J. Swearinger, DeAndre Hopkins, Posey and Deji Karim to be on that roster, and Johnson and Cruse are probably safe bets to be cleaning out their lockers come Saturday afternoon.