Garret Wallow's preparation for the 2023 season is different this year.
The Texans linebacker heads into his third NFL campaign, and he's enthused about a new leader who played the same position, for the same franchise.
"We're all excited to have a guy that's been in our shoes, a guy who is young and has a lot of energy," Wallow said of Texans Head Coach DeMeco Ryans. "I met him the other day and you could just feel the energy. We're all excited, especially myself, to get to learn from him and get to play for him and get to lay it on the line for him."
On Tuesday at Shearn Elementary in south Houston, Wallow helped kick off 'The Pass the STAAR with TORO Program' presented by Texas Children's Hospital.
In 2022, Wallow started three times and appeared in 13 games. He's hoping to grow as a player, and he's been a big fan of the San Francisco linebacker corps.
"I loved watching the 49ers linebackers," Wallow said. "They're a good linebacking group having been coached by DeMeco."
Ryans was the San Francisco defensive coordinator the last two seasons, and his squad allowed the fewest points and yards in the NFL in 2022.
Wallow, meanwhile, is on the mend after a January ankle surgery. While he's taking that rehab "day by day", he explained how his mental preparation for the upcoming year has altered from the past.
"I know the business a little bit more," Wallow said. "I know how things operate more. I just prepare myself mentally to succeed at this level, to see this game. I want to be out there physically, but right now I have to take it slow."
Patience, according to Wallow, is the "key" to this offseason. He's hoping for the bet season yet and knows he can't jeopardize it by rushing the rehab process.
The Texans start the offseason conditioning program on Tuesday at NRG Stadium.