Coming Up
  • Sat., Aug. 30, 2014 8:00 PM - 11:00 PM CDT AdvoCare Texas Kickoff

    Celebrate the return of college football with a Big Ten and SEC showdown at NRG Stadium, as the LSU Tigers and Wisconsin Badgers square off in the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff on Saturday August 30 at 8pm. Secure yours today by calling 832-667-2390 or at advocare texas kickoff dot com.

  • Sun., Aug. 31, 2014 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM CDT Kickoff at Kemah Boardwalk Join the Houston Texans Cheerleaders, Ambassadors, TORO, and the Battle Ready Band at the Kickoff at Kemah Boardwalk on Sun., Aug. 31 from 1-3 PM. Bring the entire family for autograph signings, live music, & prize giveaways!
  • Tue., Sep. 02, 2014 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM CDT Verizon Texans Players Show

    Meet Texans defensive ends Jared Crick and Tim Jamison at the Verizon Greenway Store, 3817 Southwest Fwy., Houston, TX 77027

    Lots of Texans prizes & giveaways!

    Player(s) subject to change.

  • Tue., Sep. 02, 2014 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM CDT Texans Live at Houston Texans Grille Texans Live with Marc Vandermeer broadcasts live from 6-8pm the Houston Texans Grille (12848 Queensbury Ln, Houston, TX 77024), and offensive lineman Duane Brown calls in from 6-7pm.  Lots of Texans prizes & giveaways
  • Fri., Sep. 05, 2014 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM CDT Texans Friday: Sonic Drive-In

    Friday, September 5
    Noon-1pm – Sonic Drive-In, 8504 Main St., Houston, TX 77025

    Proudly wear your Texans gear to get a FREE All-American Hot Dog (1/person) for this hour at this location
    Enter for possibility to win a pair of tickets and parking pass to Texans vs. Redskins game on Sept. 7

    Houston Texans Cheerleaders signing autographs and taking pictures

  • Fri., Sep. 05, 2014 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM CDT Texans Friday: Go Texan Store

    Friday, September 5
    6pm-7pm – Go Texan Store at NRG Stadium

    Stop by for a 20% discount on white gear for this hour in preparation for Liberty White Out on Sept. 7

    Enter for possibility to win a pair of tickets and parking pass to Texans vs. Redskins game on Sept. 7

    Houston Texans Cheerleaders signing autographs and taking pictures

  • Tue., Sep. 09, 2014 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM CDT “Player Inspired: Kareem Jackson Fly Guy” Apparel Line Launch Party

    Visit the Go Texan Store at NRG Stadium on Tuesday, September 9 from 6 to 7 PM for cornerback Kareem Jackson's new Player Inspired Fly Guy apparel line launch party. Stop by to meet Kareem, get light refreshments and to pick up some of his new apparel.

  • Tue., Sep. 09, 2014 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM CDT Duane Brown Live at Houston Texans Grille Join Texans offensive lineman Duane Brown every Tuesday from 6-7pm at the Houston Texans Grille (12848 Queensbury Ln, Houston, TX 77024), then stay Texans Live from 7-8pm.  Lots of Texans prizes & giveaways
  • Fri., Sep. 12, 2014 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM CDT Texans Friday: Pappadeaux

    Friday, September 12

    Noon-1pm – Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen, 13080 NW Freeway, Houston, TX 77040

    Proudly wear your Texans gear to get a FREE cup of Shrimp Gumbo (1/person) for this hour at this location, dine-in only

    Houston Texans Cheerleaders signing autographs and taking pictures

News

Print
RSS

2011 Season in Review: Linebackers

Posted Mar 31, 2012

Inside linebacker Brian Cushing led the Texans with 114 tackles in 2011 and was named team MVP. Outside linebacker Connor Barwin had a team-high 11.5 sacks.


Season in Review: QB | RB | WR | TE | OL | DL

A position-by-position look at the Texans’ 2011 season

Brian Cushing moved inside to Mike linebacker after playing mostly outside in a 4-3 in his first two seasons. He led the Texans’ second-ranked defense with 114 tackles, 37 more than the next-closest player (Glover Quin, 77), and was voted team MVP. Cushing also had 4.0 sacks, two interceptions and two forced fumbles. He was named a captain at midseason and second-team All-Pro by the Associated Press.

Mario Williams started the season as the primary pass rusher in Wade Phillips’ 3-4, playing outside linebacker on the weakside. After an offseason full of skepticism as to whether he could succeed in his new role, Williams had 5.0 sacks in the first five games. But his season ended in Week 5 with a torn pectoral muscle against the Oakland Raiders.

Outside linebacker Connor Barwin, another converted 4-3 end, moved to Williams’ spot on the weakside in Week 7. He finished with a team-high 11.5 sacks, tied for ninth in the NFL and third in the AFC. He also led the Texans with 27 quarterback hits and had seven passes defensed. Barwin was named AFC Defensive Player of the Month in November after leading the league with 6.5 sacks in three games.

Outside linebacker Brooks Reed set a Texans rookie record with 6.0 sacks. He moved into the starting lineup after Williams’ injury and spent one game on the weakside. In Week 7, Reed moved to the strongside and reeled off a sack in five consecutive games. He had 11 quarterback hits on the season and 3.5 sacks in the playoffs, tying three other players for the league postseason lead.

DeMeco Ryans started inside on the weakside at Mo linebacker. While recovering from a torn Achilles that ended his 2010 season, Ryans also played through an elbow injury and started all 16 games. The defensive captain had 66 tackles (44 solo) and was named the Texans’ Ed Block Courage Award winner.

Second-year linebacker Darryl Sharpton split reps with Ryans before suffering a season-ending injury in Week 8. Veteran inside linebacker Tim Dobbins had only four tackles in the regular season but made a crucial goal-line stand in the third quarter of the Texans’ Divisional Round loss at Baltimore.

Outside linebackers Bryan Braman and Jesse Nading and inside linebacker Mister Alexander saw limited action in backup roles.

Linebackers in Review
Starters: ILB: Brian Cushing (16 games 2 postseason), DeMeco Ryans (16 games 2 postseason); OLB: Connor Barwin (16 games 2 postseason), Brooks Reed (11 games 2 postseason), Mario Williams (5 games)

Newcomers: Reed (second-round draft pick), Tim Dobbins (free agent signing), Bryan Braman (undrafted rookie free agent), Mister Alexander (undrafted rookie free agent)

Injuries: Williams (season-ending pectoral, Week 5) ; Ryans (elbow, preseason); Sharpton (season-ending quadriceps, Week 8)

Notable number: 9.5 – Sacks for Barwin from Week 9 through the end of the season, tied with Jared Allen and Elvis Dumervil for most in the NFL. All of those sacks came after Barwin switched from strongside linebacker to Williams’ former spot on the weakside.

Season highlight: Week 12 at Jacksonville – Barwin had a team-record 4.0 sacks and a career-high 10 tackles as the Texans beat the Jaguars 20-13 at EverBank Field. Reed added a sack of his own as the Texans tied a team record with seven sacks in the game. Jaguars quarterback Blaine Gabbert was benched in the fourth quarter after posting a 44.6 rating.

Quotable: “Looks like he can play outside linebacker to me.” - Wade Phillips on Sept. 11 on Williams, after Williams had two sacks in Week 1 against Indianapolis

“I think he’s played outstanding. He’s a holy terror on the field.” - Phillips on Sept. 22 on Cushing

“This is the second time this year it’s happened. It was kind of uncontrollable today, just pouring out. I don’t know. If it’s got to send a message to our team about playing physical and getting them going, I’ll do it every game.” - Cushing on Nov. 6, after bleeding profusely from his forehead thanks to a head butt by Browns guard Shaun Lauvao in Week 9 at Reliant Stadium

“He’s unleashing this year. That’s the bottom line – he gets better and better every week.” – Defensive end Antonio Smith on Nov. 27 on Barwin, after Barwin’s record-setting game at Jacksonville

“I think it’s official that ‘Bulls on Parade’ is the new name of this defense. Every time they played that song, the crowd was like a 12th man.” - Barwin on Dec. 4, after the Texans beat the Falcons 17-10 at Reliant Stadium, a few days after the “Bulls on Parade” nickname was born on Twitter

“It’s an amazing feeling — a great feeling and big sigh of relief. Six years is a long time to wait.”- Ryans on Dec. 11, after the Texans clinched their first-ever AFC South title in Week 14 at Cincinnati

“Brooks Reed has come in and really hasn’t played like a rookie. He’s played like a good player. He’s relentless as far as the running game and the passing game, and that’s helped him get better and better.” - Phillips on Jan. 12 on Reed


Twitter.com/NickScurfield

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