Texans Training Camp: Day Seven

The Houston Texans wrapped up day seven at Texans training camp.

-Jadeveon Clowney stole the day in more ways than one and it started with his play on the field. Clowney once again showed his burst off the edge in 9-on-7 drills and caught running back Jonathan Grimes two steps into the start of his run when Clowney met him in the backfield. Later in practice, he came off the edge running by blockers to reach up with his left hand, blocking a Shane Lechler punt. He was all over the field in the early portion of practice but was pulled later to be iced up. Head Coach Bill O’Brien pointed out that Clowney is on a “pitch count” to work him back to full strength from his offseason surgery.

-Bill O’Brien is an equal opportunity employer and today Ryan Fitzpatrick and Chris Myers found that out. The two took a lap around the field for a bad center-quarterback exchange that left the football on the field. Not one but two, to be exact, for the mistakes they made on the field.

-The Texans went live during team drills where they actually took each other to the ground and it was the most physical Whitney Mercilus has looked all camp. He was flying around and caught Alfred Blue trying to hurdle a pile in mid air with a nice hit. Mercilus looked good moving around and trying to sort out the running plays at him, but he is still struggling with setting the edge in the run game.

-DeAndre Hopkins had a nice day at the expense of Brandon Harris and he did it every way possible. Hopkins went deep over Harris from the arm of Fitzpatrick and then made an acrobatic back shoulder catch on the sideline in an impressive display of body control. Hopkins is making some positive strides in his second season and has been a growing favorite of Fitzpatrick in camp.

-Uzoma Nwachukwu had another strong day at camp and he is fitting into what this offense is asking from him. He is running some crisp routes and made his best catch on a tight spiral from the arm of Case Keenum through traffic which hit Nwachukwu in stride. He also made a key block in a screen play to spring Keshawn Martin for a big gain in the team session.

-Tom Savage took a step back today as a quarterback and he struggled with running the offense. He was locking onto wide receivers and gave the pass rush enough time to end the play for a sack. There will have to be a waiting game on when Savage will be ready and it looks as though it will be taking longer than most fans would like.

-Kicker Chris Boswell looked good in his field goal attempts today despite missing one. He has a consistent approach to the football which usually leads to accurate results. He is going to make it tough for Randy Bullock to hold onto his job as the incumbent kicker.

-Rookie fullback Jay Prosch was limited today with an apparent hand/wrist issue. He had a heavy cast on his hand which kept him out of practice. Seeing how he is used in the coming days with his cast will be something to pay attention to.

-Inside linebacker Mike Mohamed has looked like a different player with the pads on and he is slowly inching his way up the depth chart. He has been a physical player and was impressive in goal line situations for the defense today. He played downhill and met Andre Brown head on in the hole to stop him short of the end zone. He is one of the more physical linebackers on the inside and he is not afraid to mix it up with anyone on the field.

-D.J. Swearinger is showing signs of understanding coverages and what the offense is trying to do as shown by his recent play during camp. He read a route package that allowed him to jump an out route and make an interception of Fitzpatrick that would have resulted in a touchdown. Swearinger looks much more comfortable in zone coverage than in man coverage and it has shown early in training camp.

-The defensive line looks like it has some competition to fill out the position group. Jared Crick, Tim Jamison and Ricardo Mathews have looked much better against the Texans offensive line. Crick had a batted pass and has been playing some stout two gap defensive end which is a better fit for him. Jamison and Mathews created problems for the run game today which the two hadn’t really excelled at during camp. It is good to see some spurts from these two in the defensive run game especially in a defensive line group where not much is settled.

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