The Way Too Early Crack at the Texans' 53-Man Roster

Keep Houston Press Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Houston and help keep the future of Houston Press free.

Photo by Marco Torres
Each year on his nationally syndicated radio show, Jim Rome holds a little thing known as the Smack Off. I know many of you already know what that is (I've written roughly 10,000 words on the topic in the past few years), but briefly, for those who don't -- it's the annual show where he invites the best callers to call in and run their mouths like idiots for around four minutes apiece, and the biggest, most entertaining idiot is the winner.

I've won five times.

I bring this up because one of the annual Smack Off traditions happens after the first caller, when tweeters and e-mailers to the show immediately tell Rome to "SHUT IT DOWN!" and say "IT'S OVER!" because "NOBODY IS BEATING THAT CALL!" It's always ultra-premature, and always hilarious.

Well, this post is the "SHUT IT DOWN!" and "IT'S OVER!" Smack Off post of the Texans' preseason. Yes, after one practice, I'm going to give you the 53-man roster that will fly to San Diego in Week 1 to take on the Chargers in early September.

You all know the format that this post typically takes. Let's start out with the first category...

THE VETERAN LOCKS (34 total): QB - Matt Schaub QB - T.J. Yates RB - Arian Foster RB - Ben Tate FB - Greg Jones TE - Owen Daniels TE - Garrett Graham WR - Andre Johnson WR - Keshawn Martin T - Duane Brown T - Derek Newton T - Ryan Harris G - Wade Smith G - Brandon Brooks C- Chris Myers C/G - Ben Jones DT - Earl Mitchell DE - Jared Crick DE - J.J. Watt DE - Antonio Smith DE - Tim Jamison OLB - Brooks Reed OLB - Whitney Mercilus OLB - Bryan Braman ILB - Brian Cushing ILB - Tim Dobbins ILB - Darryl Sharpton S - Ed Reed S - Danieal Manning CB - Johnathan Joseph CB - Kareem Jackson CB - Brice McCain P - Shane Lechler LS - Jon Weeks

Comments: I do think there will be a quasi-battle for the backup quarterback position, but I think that a) a tie will go to T.J. Yates and b) even if Keenum manages to win the backup position, there's no way the Texans cut loose a quarterback who has starting experience and a postseason win. The Texans still precarious wide receiver depth is highlighted by a) there only being two "lock" veteran wide receivers and b) one of those two being Keshawn Martin. Tim Jamison missed most of last season, but the coaching staff really likes him, and he's cheap labor.

THE DRAFTEES (9 total) WR - DeAndre Hopkins (1st round) S - D.J. Swearinger (2nd round) T - Brennan Williams (3rd round) OLB - Sam Montgomery (3rd round) OLB - Trevardo Williams (4th round) G/T - David Quessenberry (6th round) WR/KR - Alan Bonner (6th round) DT - Chris Jones (6th round) TE - Ryan Griffin (6th round)

Comments: Despite some of the bumps in the road with this draft class so far through mini camp and OTA's (Williams' knee injury, Montgomery's alleged conditioning issues), I think all nine of these guys make the 53 man roster. If I had to bet on biggest contributors outside of the top two picks, I'd take Trevardo Williams as a situational pass rushing specialist and Bonner as a kick returner. Brennan Williams is a wild card. If his knee is healthy, it'll be interesting to see if he is able to work his way into the competition for the right tackle spot.

Thanks to a deep rookie class and plenty of vacancies left behind by free agent defection and cap cutting moves, spots are filling up quickly on this roster. Only 10 spots left and by my count we still absolutely need at least one more wide receiver, another tailback, a couple more cornerbacks, and a kicker. So.....

WR - DeVier Posey RB - Deji Karim CB - Brandon Harris CB - Roc Carmichael K - Randy Bullock

Comments: If the reports on Posey are true, it sounds like he is going to angle hard to stay off the PUP list heading into the season. I just can't, in good conscience, concede the fifth wide receiver spot to LeStar Jean, of whom the 2012 version might be the worst third wide receiver in the entire league. At the third tailback spot, I'll take the veteran Karim since the Texans can stash at least one or two of the undrafted free agent rookies on the practice squad. At corner, looking at who else is in camp, Harris and Carmichael should probably be in the lock list, but both have been so udnerwhelming in two seasons so far. I'll give the kicking job to Bullock only because there's really no one else right now. It'll be interesting to see if Kubiak brings a veteran in to compete.

So five spots to go, and here's our positional breakdown:

QB: 2 RB: 3 FB: 1 TE: 3 WR: 5 OL: 9 Specialists: 3 DL: 6 LB: 8 DB: 8

Let's fill out the rest of this bad boy:

49. Case Keenum, QB. The Texans could put him on the practice squad again, and probably with minimal risk of losing him, but I just have a feeling that that Kubiak's talk during the spring about how far Keenum has come is for real.

50. Shiloh Keo, S. Really tempted to go with Eddie Pleasant for the fourth safety spot, but Keo has mad special teams love, and I doubt that Kubiak wants to do anything that could weaken his special teams.

51. Terrell McClain, DT. Probably need one more big body along that defensive line. The 300 pound McClain fits that bill.

52. LeStar Jean, WR. Fine.

53. Eddie Pleasant, S. I can't find a corner or another offensive lineman who I'd rather put in here more than a safety who the team likes, and who, let's face it, plays a position that the Texans could run into some injury issues because of age.

Listen to Sean Pendergast on 1560 Yahoo! Sports Radio from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and nationally on the Yahoo! Sports Radio network Saturdays from 10 a.m. to noon CST. Also, follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SeanCablinasian.

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.