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Sure, it's a big deal that the rookies could be on the field for the first time this weekend at the Houston Methodist Training Center, but it was also the first real field action for the new Texans coaches as they got to work actual football drills - and it's just the beginning of the on-turf construction project of the 2021 Texans.
"Our staff was so happy today, that for the first time this coaching staff got to get on the field for the last two days with our rookies and implement what we're all about here. Implement our system, get those guys up to speed," said Head Coach David Culley.
After almost a month of strength and conditioning and Zoom meetings with the veterans, the staff got to take the newcomers out for a test drive and see what they have. With the amount of experienced players on the roster already jockeying for positions, the rookies are going to have to fight to find their roles, find how they can be valuable and contribute.
On Draft weekend, they're almost all we talk about. They had their pics and videos on every sports screen in America. Now, they go to the back of the class to learn, get acclimated and earn a spot on the roster.
Last year's rookie crop didn't even get on Texans campus until late July. It was a tough climb to make an impression as camp started. This season, they already have this weekend and then they'll start running with the veterans, and the staff will be able to further gauge their progress.
"The rookie minicamp is a time for us to get to the point to where we get these guys the culture that we want them to have, what we're all about." Culley said and added "...Especially in the second day here in practice, they had a good feel of doing that. We felt like they were doing the things we want a Texans football player to do."
Phase Two starts Monday as the Texans rev up how they work with the vets. More on-field practice is the elixir that this team needs, with so many new faces in the fold. Culley told reporters about doing install work on Zoom for the last four weeks, but there's nothing like being together to learn and build on chemistry and culture.
Five more weeks in this offseason program will go a long way to getting the squad the reps they need to hit the ground running once camp starts in late July.