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Leaders, WR options, the Roof, Tailgating & more | 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!

Leonard Posinski: Dear Drew, I'm a transplanted Houstonian in Dallas. I try to keep on top of what is happening with Texans but it is hard in Cowboys country. I'm an X Oiler Blue Blood turned Texan. What I am reading so far from coaches statements might as well say no comment. Can you give any meaningful updates on DeShaun Watson?

DD: Leonard's question is one that many of you had in this latest batch of mail. I'll let you all decide whether this is a meaningful answer or not.

Watson's been in the building and gone to meetings. According to Head Coach David Culley, Watson's done "what we've asked him to do." At times he's practiced in individual drills during Training Camp presented by Xfinity with the team, but when he's been on the fields lately, Watson's done solo work and thrown with members of the team's strength and conditioning staff. He's listed as the fourth quarterback on the latest depth chart.

John Olthoff: Dear Drew, Do you feel a lot of so-called "experts" are selling Texans short? Might they be a better team than they are given credit for?

DD: It depends on which experts you're referencing. Houston lost a dozen games last year, so naturally, most aren't likely to have high hopes for a 12-loss team. But from what I've seen in May and June and certainly, over the last month in practices and the two preseason games, the lines on both sides of the ball look better.

What's been most encouraging is the volume of takeaways I've seen. They've done it in practice and they've backed it up in two preseason contests. Now, the quarterbacks they've done this against have been Pro Bowlers, but the ability to get interceptions and force fumbles has been impressive.

I think the Texans can certainly win more games than they did last year.

Terry Garza: Dear Drew, Are the Texans allowing tailgating this season?
DD: Yes. All systems go. Drink a beer for me, please.

Kim Graves: Dear Drew, Will I have to wear a mask at Saturday's preseason game? Thank you.
DD: No. You don't have to. But you're certainly welcome to, if you prefer.

Matthew Gomez: Dear Drew, Will the roof be open this season?
DD: It sure looks like it. As long as the temps are between about 50 and 80 degrees and it's not raining, I think you'll see the NRG Stadium roof open on gamedays.

Charles Adams: Dear Drew, What player has the potential to become the leader of the team?

DD: Naturally, Tyrod Taylor is the first one. The quarterback has the respect of the locker room, in addition to being the guy who runs the offense. He's been in the NFL for over a decade and his teammates gravitate towards him. Defensively, Linebacker Christian Kirksey and Safety Justin Reid are a couple of players who are responsible for communicating with the rest of the defense and making sure teammates are in the right spots before the ball is snapped.

Juan Celis: Dear Drew, Besides Brandin Cooks, which other receivers do you think will step into the 2nd and 3rd options?

DD: It looks like Chris Conley and Keke Coutee. The former is a big, fast and athletic guy who's been in the NFL for six seasons. The latter has looked good during Training Camp presented by Xfinity and has been effective on the field when given the chance the last few years. Rookie Nico Collins could certainly crack into that rotation eventually, but right now, I'd say Conley and Coutee are the second and third options, though not necessarily in that order.

Bruce Fox: Dear Drew, What are we going to do with the cornerback position? By the way, it's the Commissioner.

DD: Yes Bruce, I knew it was you. Hope you and Mary are doing great. At corner, the Texans will be shorthanded that first week, because of Bradley Roby's suspension. When he's back, Terrance Mitchell, Desmond King and him, will likely be the lead dogs at the position. Veteran Vernon Hargreaves III is also back. Houston traded with Green Bay earlier this week and picked up cornerback Ka'dar Hollman. The Texans also signed Rasul Douglas, who won a Super Bowl ring as a rookie with the Eagles in 2017.

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