"Trust me. They are going to be some beasts.” Left tackle Laremy Tunsil on second-year players Max Scharping and Tytus Howard
The Houston Texans were back in pads again on Saturday with practice held indoors at the Houston Methodist Training Center. The team has held camp in the Houston heat, but will do their padded practices indoors. Each team can hold up to 14 padded practices.
"We'll be inside again today, but we will go back and forth between inside and outside," O'Brien said. "I think full pads will be inside, but when we go to shells or OTA-type practice, if that's what we're going to do, we'll go outside."
-The first day of pads on Friday went well except for one major injury that went down. Outside linebacker Duke Ejiofor, in his third season, worked his way back from a season-ending injury in 2019 but will now miss the 2020 campaign.
"Duke Ejiofor suffered a knee injury in practice yesterday," O'Brien said. "Duke's been through a lot. We're fully supportive of Duke. He was having a good training camp and it's a tough blow for him, but he'll be back. It'll be a long rehab for him, but he'll be back. We'll place him on IR at some point here over the next couple of days and then we'll go from there."
-Health-wise, the rest of the team is "OK," according to O'Brien.
-The offensive line is clicking as a unit. O'Brien had high praise for starting left tackle Laremy Tunsil and his role in helping the rest of his offensive lineman.
"He's shown up every day, real technician, very athletic, very smart, works really well with Max Scharping on that left side," O'Brien said. "I think you just said it really well that he's been in the system now for a year. Last year when the trade took place, he really didn't have a whole lot of time to get ready for – whether it's everything from the cadence to obviously his own assignment and then working with the other guys up front. Mike Devlin's done a great job with him. Nick Martin has done a really good job and Laremy is practicing really well. We're glad. The tackle situation for us, I believe right now, is really a good one."
-Tunsil was pretty straightforward about his goals for 2020.
"I'll go ahead and throw this out there – my main goal is to fix the penalties I had last year," Tunsil said. "That was really the main things I wanted to work on and work with Deshaun (Watson) this offseason. Moral of the story is just I want to improve. I want to keep improving every year that I have. I'm going into my fifth year. I want it to be just one of the best seasons I ever had."
-All five Texans starting offensive linemen are returning this year, something the Texans experienced last in 2011 and that Tunsil says he has never had in his NFL career.
-The Houston Texans announced on Friday there will be no fans for their 2020 home opener. Due to the threat of COVID-19 and increased social distancing measures, the Texans will play in an empty stadium on September 20 against the Baltimore Ravens.
-Charles Omenihu said he spent the offseason reflecting on his rookie campaign. He felt like he missed some opportunities, left some sacks on the field so he went to work on his technique and trained with former Cowboy Demarcus Ware. Omenihu says the pandemic actually helped him spend more time on getting stronger and working on his game.
-Safety Eric Murray is in "a lot of starting packages" at safety and will be valuable on special teaems, according to O'Brien. The Texans signed the free agent in March. Murray is now in his fifth NFL season after spending three seasons in Kansas City (2016-2018) and one with the Cleveland Browns (2019).
"He's a versatile guy," O'Brien said. "He's played in the deep part of the field. He's played down in the box. He's been a personal protector on the punt team, he's been on the kickoff coverage team. He's had a versatile type of career and he's a very smart guy. I think he can fill a of different roles for us. We have a lot of different packages on defense where he's going to be in there quite a bit and then he's going to help us on special teams."
-Omenihu says his favorite Texas location to quarantine or staycation is Austin.
- Brandon Dunn says being an undrafted player is the "engine" that drives his career.
"I have a spot spot for undrafted guys because I know how hard it is," Dunn said.
Players have a day off on Sunday, but training camp practices will resume on Monday at the Houston Methodist Training Center.