Greg Mancz is making the most of an opportunity.
The second-year offensive lineman has started at center for the first two preseason games in place of injured rookie Nick Martin. But he's keeping his goals simple for right now.
"I try to get a little better every day and that started the first day I got here, so I'm going to keep going every day as long as they have me here," Mancz said.
Undrafted in 2015 out of Toledo, Mancz appeared in the first three games of last season. He was placed on injured reserve in early November. But a strong showing in OTAs, minicamp and training camp propelled him into his current position, and he's performed admirably. Bill O'Brien singled out Mancz's play versus the Saints.
"I think Greg Mancz going in there and having to play against their first team unit - for having not played a lot of football in a while - I think that's a good job by him and he's got to keep it going," the head coach said.
Right guard Jeff Allen is also very complimentary of the way Mancz has gotten everyone in the correct spot.
"Greg's been doing an awesome job," Allen said. "He's out there communicating. Very smart kid. He's making the calls, putting everyone on the right page."
During his time on IR last season, Mancz relied upon the likes of tackles Derek Newton and Duane Brown, amongst others, for guidance.
"It's a process and I had some older guys like Newt and Duane and then my roommate Kendall Lamm and guys like that helped me along the way, so they helped and it was day-by-day just get better one step at a time."
His position coach Mike Devlin said Mancz is a quick study.
"He's very smart," Devlin said. "The more he plays, I think the better he'll get, as far as all the different things you may see in the NFL. He's the type of guy that so far, if a mistake has been made, it's corrected immediately."
Mancz and the Texans will practice again on Wednesday. They host the Cardinals Sunday afternoon at NRG Stadium.
Check out the best photos throughout #TexansGameday vs. the Saints.