Texans Training Camps Key Storylines
As a rebuilding team with two first-round rookies, a new head coach, and (officially) , the Houston Texans are a team not short of storylines as approaches.However, has narrowed down the endle s list of storylines to follow, starting with the departure of a star player in a blockbuster trade and its ramifications."With the Deshaun <a href="https://www.shopprobengals.com/cincinnati-bengals-t-shirts">Cincinnati Bengals T Shirts</a> Watson trade in the rearview mirror, and with the Texans having bypa sed other QB options this offseason, all eyes turn to ," NFL.com wrote. "We dont yet know if Mills can be a front-line starter, but his strong five-game stretch to close out his rookie season showed a quarterback who improved his efficiency and cut down on mistakes from his first stint as the teams starter. It appears the Texans will give Mills the 2022 season -- against a fairly robust schedule -- to prove himself, but we cant a sume anything is guaranteed for him after that."Mills finished his rookie year with 2,664 yards, 16 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions - not bad for a third-round pick with little in the way of top-tier talent to work with, and speaking of talent NFL.com's second storyline to follow surrounds Houston's offensive playmakersThe article singles out Brandin Cooks as "one clear option."Cooks is a remarkably consistent player and a consummate profe sional, fresh off of his sixth 1,000+ yard season in eight years.Outside of Cooks, however, there's a level of uncertainty."Mills and Nico Collins seemed to develop some chemistry, but the other receivers have plenty to prove while second-rounder John Metchie III continues to recover from the ACL tear he suffered in December," NFL.com wrote. "Tight end also remains a big question, especially with Jordan Akins gone, but Brevin Jordan could <a href="https://www.shopprobengals.com/larry-ogunjobi-jerseys">Larry Ogunjobi Jersey</a> be one to watch."The Texans were hesitant to rush some of their rookies into the fold last year, as both Collins and Jordan can testify.Collins flashed potential throughout the year, making just two starts through Week 10, before starting six of their final seven games during which time Mills pa sed to Collins for his first NFL touchdown.Jordan meanwhile has shown signs that he could become a real red zone weapon, recording three touchdowns and 10 first downs on just 20 receptions.Throw Metchie into the mix, a suming he's healthy, and perhaps the Texans have finally found themselves a long-term solution at slot receiver.All this being said, if there <a href="https://www.shopprobengals.com/khalid-kareem-jerseys">Khalid Kareem Jersey</a> was ever a good time for an unexpected star to breakout in training camp and push for reps - this is it.But, if Mills is ever to succeed, he needs to be part of a balanced offense that can rely on its ground game as much as it can on Mills,Scroll to Continue"The Texans ground game was a disaster last season, ranking dead last in rushing yards, yards per carry and rushing scores," NFL.com wrote.Thankfully for Texans fans, this years running back room contains a number of new faces, even if a true star name remains absent."Rex Burkhead is back after leading a late-season upset over the Los Angeles Chargers, but hell be pushed for the starting role by injury-prone ex-Colt Marlon Mack and fourth-rounder Dameon Pierce," NFL.com wrote.Mack appears the early favorite to start the season, backed up by the reliable if perhaps unremarkable Burkhead. However, relying on a player who has never played more than 14 games in a single season, and only seven in total in the last two years, is risky.Pierce has many excited. He runs with power <a href="https://www.shopprobengals.com/jake-browning-jerseys">Jake Browning Jersey</a> and purpose and is tough to bring down - just the style of back the Texans have leaned towards in recent years. Throw in his boundle s energy, and he has a real shot to contribute and establish himself early.But as is the case with most of the aforementioned playmakers, there are few certainties.If one thing is for sure though, it's that all eyes will be on new head coach Lovie Smith.The beautifully bearded coach was promoted to the position from defensive coordinator after a bizarre quest from Houston's front office to find David Culley's replacement.Finding an available head coach with a winning record is uncommon. Finding one who has won NFL Coach of the Year and taken a team to the Super Bowl and five winning seasons is rare. Smith may not have been the bookies' favorite, but he has all the tools to be an upgrade on Culley."Lovie Smith built his Chicago Bears defenses on a fierce pa s rush, rangy linebackers and playmaking secondaries," NFL.com wrote. "The latter part of that equation will be fascinating to watch develop in Houston, as the Texans likely will thrust first- <a href="https://www.shopprobengals.com/cincinnati-bengals-jerseys">Cincinnati Bengals Jersey</a> and second-rounders and Jalen Pitre in as starters at corner and safety, respectively. Theyll need to be ready to be thrown into the fire against a slate of talented offenses on the schedule, but Stingley and Pitre have the chops to be fixtures for years with the proper development."Fierce pa s rushers and rangy linebackers are something the Texans are not short of with general manager Nick Caserio focusing much of his recent attention in these departments, adding the likes of Jerry Hughes, Mario Addison, Rasheem Green, Ogbo Okoronkwo and rookies Thomas Booker and Christian Harris.The succe s of Houston's secondary, meanwhile, relies not just on the two aforementioned rookies but several other new faces also.While Tavierre Thomas, Desmond King, and Eric Murray all return, the Texans added potentially impactful veterans Steven Nelson, M.J. Stewart, and Fabian Moreau among others.Only time will tell if NFL.com nailed the biggest storylines of this year's training camp, but regardle s, these are certainly ones worth keeping a close eye on.