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  • Sat., Mar. 07, 2015 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM CST Play Safe Clinic presented by Houston Methodist and GE

    The Houston Texans are proud to partner with GE and Houston Methodist to launch the Play Safe Football Clinics! These clinics will highlight the importance of concussion awareness,  proper hydration, and nutrition.

    Special guests will include experts in related fields, Houston Texans Ambassadors, and Texans Cheerleaders!  Participants will hear from guest speakers and then take part in interactive football drills. 
     
    Play Safe Football Clinics
    9:30am: Check-in
    10:00am-12:30pm: Clinics


    March 7: Cinco Ranch High School
    March 21: James Driver Park
    April 11: Pearland Junior High West
    April 25: Capmbell Middle School


    These events are free, however registration is required. There are four different dates and locations to choose from. Space is limited, so register for a clinic near you today through this link - http://www.houstontexans.com/kids/footballclinic.html

     

  • Sat., Mar. 21, 2015 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM CDT Play Safe Clinic presented by Houston Methodist and GE The Houston Texans are proud to partner with GE and Houston Methodist to launch the Play Safe Football Clinics! These clinics will highlight the importance of concussion awareness,  proper hydration, and nutrition.

    Special guests will include experts in related fields, Houston Texans Ambassadors, and Texans Cheerleaders!  Participants will hear from guest speakers and then take part in interactive football drills. 
     
    Play Safe Football Clinics
    9:30am: Check-in
    10:00am-12:30pm: Clinics


    March 7: Cinco Ranch High School
    March 21: James Driver Park
    April 11: Pearland Junior High West
    April 25: Capmbell Middle School


    These events are free, however registration is required. There are four different dates and locations to choose from. Space is limited, so register for a clinic near you today through this link - http://www.houstontexans.com/kids/footballclinic.html
  • Sat., Mar. 28, 2015 3:00 PM - 10:00 PM CDT 2015 Houston Texans Cheerleader Tryouts

    The 2015 Houston Texans Cheerleaders Tryouts are Saturday, March 28! Get the opportunity to perform on national television, travel the world, and more. Tryouts are free and you have nothing to lose!

    Click the link for complete info to register - http://www.houstontexans.com/cheerleaders/tryouts/2015.html

  • Sat., Apr. 11, 2015 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM CDT Play Safe Clinic presented by Houston Methodist and GE The Houston Texans are proud to partner with GE and Houston Methodist to launch the Play Safe Football Clinics! These clinics will highlight the importance of concussion awareness,  proper hydration, and nutrition.

    Special guests will include experts in related fields, Houston Texans Ambassadors, and Texans Cheerleaders!  Participants will hear from guest speakers and then take part in interactive football drills. 
     
    Play Safe Football Clinics
    9:30am: Check-in
    10:00am-12:30pm: Clinics


    March 7: Cinco Ranch High School
    March 21: James Driver Park
    April 11: Pearland Junior High West
    April 25: Capmbell Middle School


    These events are free, however registration is required. There are four different dates and locations to choose from. Space is limited, so register for a clinic near you today through this link - http://www.houstontexans.com/kids/footballclinic.html
  • Sun., Apr. 19, 2015 6:00 AM - 3:30 PM CDT 2015 Houston Texans Kids Triathlon

    The all new Houston Texans Kids Triathlon presented by Texas Children’s Hospital is April 19. Space is limited and this event will sell out, so register your kids today by clicking on this link - http://www.houstontexans.com/kids/triathlon/home.html

  • Thu., Apr. 23, 2015 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM CDT Texans Radio Live at Houston Texans Grille Stop by the Houston Texans Grille located at CityCentre (I-10 & Beltway 8) as Texans Radio broadcasts LIVE with special guests including Voice of the Texans, Marc Vandermeer!
  • Sat., Apr. 25, 2015 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM CDT Play Safe Clinic presented by Houston Methodist and GE The Houston Texans are proud to partner with GE and Houston Methodist to launch the Play Safe Football Clinics! These clinics will highlight the importance of concussion awareness,  proper hydration, and nutrition.

    Special guests will include experts in related fields, Houston Texans Ambassadors, and Texans Cheerleaders!  Participants will hear from guest speakers and then take part in interactive football drills. 
     
    Play Safe Football Clinics
    9:30am: Check-in
    10:00am-12:30pm: Clinics


    March 7: Cinco Ranch High School
    March 21: James Driver Park
    April 11: Pearland Junior High West
    April 25: Capmbell Middle School


    These events are free, however registration is required. There are four different dates and locations to choose from. Space is limited, so register for a clinic near you today through this link - http://www.houstontexans.com/kids/footballclinic.html
  • Sat., May. 02, 2015 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM CDT Texans Care Volunteer Day presented by Reliant Texans Care Volunteer Day presented by Reliant is a city-wide volunteer day on Saturday, May 2, 2015 from 8AM - noon where Texans players, Cheerleaders, Ambassadors, TORO and staff will volunteer alongside Texans fans!

    As an organization, the Texans make it a priority to give back to the Houston community. This day provides an opportunity to invite Texans fans to volunteer with the team to make a positive change. These organizations work to improve the standard of living for the young people of Houston, which aligns with the Texans mission to be Champions for Youth.

    There are plenty of locations across Houston, so sign up today at http://www.houstontexans.com/community/volunteer-day.html!
  • Wed., May. 13, 2015 6:00 PM - 8:30 PM CDT Moms Clinic presented by Houston Methodist and GE

    The Houston Texans are proud to partner with GE and Houston Methodist to launch the Play Safe Moms Clinic just for football moms on May 13th!

    This free clinic will provide moms with the latest safety information in concussion awareness, proper hydration and nutrition to prepare them for the upcoming football season.  These classroom-style instructions and interactive football drills will take place in the Houston Methodist Training Center.

    Space is limited, so register today at http://www.houstontexans.com/kids/momclinic.html!

  • Thu., May. 21, 2015 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM CDT Texans Radio Live at Houston Texans Grille Stop by the Houston Texans Grille located at CityCentre (I-10 & Beltway 8) as Texans Radio broadcasts LIVE from 6pm - 7pm with special guests including Voice of the Texans, Marc Vandermeer!

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Whitney Mercilus excited for Saturday night

Posted Aug 9, 2012

Rookie linebacker Whitney Mercilus has impressed in training camp, but now it's time to do so in a game.

When outside linebacker Whitney Mercilus hits the field Saturday night against the Panthers, it will be his first game of football in 224 days.
 
For the Texans’ 2012 first-round draft pick, the day can't arrive soon enough.

“I’m pretty excited,” Mercilus said. “We finally get away from the camp aspect, and I finally get to strut my stuff on the field.”

The last time Mercilus was able to 'strut his stuff' was the final day of 2011. He and Illinois topped UCLA 20-14 in San Francisco at the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl on New Years' Eve. Mercilus put up numbers befitting a consensus All-American and winner of the Ted Hendricks Trophy, with three tackles for loss to go along with 1.5 sacks.

The journey between then and now included the decision to leave school for the NFL a year early on Jan. 3, the NFL Scouting Combine in late February, the draft and his arrival in Houston as the team’s first pick. Add in signing his rookie contract, taking part in OTAs (organized team activities) and mini-camp and two weeks of training camp, and the Texans' youngest player has quite a bit in the last nine months.

Texans left tackle Duane Brown has a bird’s-eye view of Mercilus in practice. He's impressed by the strides Mercilus has taken since the start of OTAs in May.

“He’s starting to learn a lot, and learn very quickly,” Brown said. “The first couple of days, he was a guy that liked to bite on a lot. If you used some crafty vet moves, he’d bite on them. Now he’s starting to get a feel for the game and is starting to put a lot of pressure on us.”

Brown’s analysis jives with what Mercilus’ father Wilner said of his son the day after the Texans used the 26th pick in the draft on him. The elder Mercilus promised that his son is a “hard worker,” and the type who would only need to be told something once. That attitude, combined with impressive physical attributes, could pay nice dividends for the Texans' defense this year and beyond.

“How quick Whitney comes along, that’s how deep our defense will be and how much production we get from those guys rushing the passer,” Texans coach Gary Kubiak said. “He’s got the speed and all those things that we know that he has. He’s looked very good.”

Although the preseason is sometimes discounted by fans, media and veteran players, Mercilus isn’t taking Saturday night’s contest lightly. He knows a lot is at stake.

“It’s very important, because it shows that you can actually play,” Mercilus said. “You’re dependable and accountable, definitely, when it comes time for the season. It shows to the coaches that they can trust you in doing the things that are right.”

Mercilus' position coach, Reggie Herring, has guided his share of talented linebackers, including Dallas' DeMarcus Ware. Herring is bullish on Mercilus’ future, which starts on the field this weekend in Charlotte.

“Whitney is very bright,” Herring said. “He has excellent movement skills. That’s a kid who has a chance to develop quicker than somebody who’s been down in the three-point stance and isn’t as good an athlete.”

For now, Mercilus isn’t worried about the long-term future or where he fits in. He plans to get over the pregame butterflies, which he said will be “huge,” and keep things simple against the Panthers.

“Just go out there and make plays,” Mercilus said. “Get sacks, make tackles, make tackles for loss. Just the regular stuff.”

Based on the Texans' pre-draft evaluations of Mercilus, and what the team has seen through a month of OTAs and two weeks of training camp, the 'regular stuff' will work out just fine for the rookie on Saturday.


Twitter.com/DoughertyDrew

Content on HoustonTexans.com does not necessarily represent the views of the Houston Texans front office staff, coaches or executives.

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