The Texans wrapped up a productive three weeks of OTAs on Friday. Head coach Bill O'Brien was "happy" with the rookie class getting up to speed with the playbook and practice habits. The rest of the players made big strides in their second year of his system.
"I think that we've accomplished a lot," O'Brien said Friday. "I think that the guys that were here last year, having been in the system now for over a year, they're able to practice faster, there's not as much thinking as there was when we were installing all three phases last year."
While both offensive and defensive schemes can be mentally demanding, coaches and players appeared to be on the same page as far as expectations went, according to O'Brien. Brian Cushing recalls still learning the nuances of the playbook, schemes, substitutions, etc., in Weeks 1 and 2 of the regular season last year. For Cushing, learning has been replaced by instinct this offseason.
"The second year going into it, I feel way more comfortable, way more comfortable," Cushing said. "Just even OTAs how much smoother running and better we feel on defense, a lot more confidence, guys are talking to each other, communicating and we're anticipating things a lot more instead of really just trying to figure ourselves out and figure our defense and our identity. We've got that down and now it's just building upon that."