Big brother. Little brother.
That’s how DeAndre Hopkins describes his relationship with teammate Will Fuller V.
"That's like my little brother, on and off the field,” Hopkins said during training camp. “He can ask me about things personally, I can ask him about things personally. When you're around somebody and you talk to him every day, you build that bond, that relationship that lasts longer than football, like all these guys here.”
On Sunday, little brother had the game of his career: three touchdowns, 217 yards receiving on 14 catches in the Texans 53-23 win over. Hopkins said he was “a proud big brother” after that performance.
But standing in the team auditorium in front of a room of media, Fuller was quick to give credit back to Hopkins.
“Playing with Hop, like I always say, is easy,” Fuller said. “He gets a lot of coverages thrown his way. And I feel like that's why they brought me here, to help him out. And it took me a while, but I finally had this big game. Just trying to help my dog out.”
Even with two, sometimes three defenders, he still managed to catch seven passes for 88 yards. There was something about seeing Fuller having his first big game since he tore his ACL last year.
They not only talk off the field, they talk on the field too. At one point in the Week 5 game, Hopkins, Fuller and Deshaun Watson discussed repeating a particular play. The wide receivers liked what they got from the Falcons defense. After adding some modifications, the offense incorporated more of it.
“I think we ran that play four or five times in the game,” head coach Bill O’Brien said on Texans Radio. “We hit Hop once or twice and we hit Will the rest.
In a league that’s built on competition at the highest level, the genuine relationship between two top-notch receivers has been fun to watch over the last few years. Especially for Hopkins, who was once the little brother to former Texans wide receiver, now serving as assistant to the head coach, Andre Johnson.
Through five games this season, Hopkins has caught 31 receptions for 347 yards and two touchdowns while Fuller has 28 catches for 400 yards and three touchdowns.