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Defense Outlook, Offensive System, Gameday Meals | Dear Drew

Got a question about the Texans? Life in general? Drew Dougherty's your guy. He's been with the Texans since 2009 and is chock full of meaningful, as well as generally useless, information. Fire away by clicking HERE!

Charles Plummer: Dear Drew, What type of offense does Pep Hamilton use?DD: It's technically a West Coast Offense, but he's playfully called it a "No Coast Offense" in years past. Hamilton met with the media in the early part of April, and said he wanted to "present balance" to the opponent. Improving in the run game, while still being able to take deep shots from time-to-time is important to him. Ultimately, Hamilton and everyone else from General Manager Nick Caserio down to the players have said the Texans must run the ball better than they did last season, when they averaged less than four yards per carry.

Mike Henry: Dear Drew: Who will start at running back?
DD: Caserio has said nobody's given a starting position, and there will be competition. I envision more than one guy starting at running back next season. Rex Burkhead has the most experience in the NFL, as well as in this offense. He's entering his 10th NFL season, and second with the Texans. Marlon Mack is a veteran who signed with the club this offseason, and he's had some good seasons with the Colts. Rookie Dameon Pierce is a rugged back out of Florida, who's also caught the ball out of the backfield some. At various points throughout the year, depending on who's hot or the defensive matchup, I could see each of them getting starts.

Chance Trahan: Dear Drew, Do you think the Texans will have a better defense then they did last year?
DD: I do. They added a proven, productive veteran cornerback in Steven Nelson, and used the third overall pick on another cornerback in Derek Stingley, Jr. Desmond King and Tavierre Thomas both played well for the Texans last year as well, so it looks like Head Coach Lovie Smith has improved at a position that he said needed improving.

The defensive line has added some help most notably in Rasheem Green (6.5 sacks last year with Seattle), Mario Addison (seven sacks last year in Buffalo) and Jerry Hughes (58 career sacks in 12 NFL seasons).

Having an array of productive linemen up front was a driving force for some of Smith's more successful defenses when he was with the Bears, so the new faces added to a mix of Jonathan Greenard, Maliek Collins, Ross Blacklock, Roy Lopez and the rest should serve Houston well on defense.

Denzell Davis: Dear Drew, When will they release the game themes for this season?
DD: That typically happens in July. Expect a shakeup this year with the Battle Red game. The uniform/helmet ensemble will likely look differently than what we've seen around here for the last decade on Battle Red Day.

The Rauch Daddy: Dear Drew, If you are in charge of a good luck pregame meal, what are you making?
DD: I mix it up, and never stick with the same meal for pregame. But it's usually something light. I'm more about the postgame spread. If it's a noon kickoff, I like pizza (pepperoni and Italian sausage) or fried chicken when I come home. If it's a night game, a fried egg sandwich with cheese.

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