Pre-Draft Offensive Outlook | Vandermeer's View

If the Texans lined up this weekend, their receivers would likely be Will Fuller V, Kenny Stills, Brandin Cooks and Randall Cobb. DeAndre Carter would be their return man.

This group does not include the pass-catching abilities of David Johnson, Duke Johnson, Darren Fells, Jordan Akins, Jordan Thomas and whatever they might get out of Kahale Warring. Oh, and Deshaun Watson is throwing the rock.

The receiver group has speed. Cooks, Fuller and company can stretch the defense. Cobb could be the slot receiver that we've longed for in the O'Brien era. Stills is a seasoned pro who's proven he can make plays in a variety of ways, but we shouldn't go any further without talking about balance.

The earth continues to be in its current orbit, meaning the Texans will want to continue to run the ball well, and no matter who is carrying the hogskin, execution from the offensive line is a key ingredient.

At this point last year, three of the projected starters up front weren't on the radar of anyone outside of the building. Now, the line we expect to see has had success and the benefit of time spent together to make a year-one-to-year-two jump in improvement as a unit.

Two years ago, protection was an issue. It dramatically improved in 2019, so we will see what kind of steps forward the whole line can take this season.

Don't fret too much about the lack of an offseason program as far as the line is concerned. Yes, it would be far better to have the guys in the building - everyone knows that, but the O-line is also one of those position groups that really doesn't hit its stride until hitting begins. Sometimes it takes a few regular season games to get going.

The disappearing OTAs have to be a concern for teams' passing attacks. That's why it's good that the Texans top 4 receivers are all experienced vets who can hit the ground running and catching. Cooks knows the system from New England, and Cobb is a fast starter who's smart and has plenty of juice to make plays early.

The latest addition to the team is certainly a shot in the arm, but this is not the final brick in the building. One thing this organization has proven is that deals will be made. We'll all be watching as the draft approaches and the squad continues to take shape.

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