The Texans didn't find any running backs who fit their one-cut system in the draft last weekend, but they added two today in rookie free agents Arian Foster and Jeremiah Johnson.
Both were 1,000-yard rushers at major college programs whose draft stock took a hit because of injuries. Foster (6-1, 215) is a bigger, between-the-tackles back who could fill a similar role to Chris Brown. Johnson (5-9, 210) has a nearly identical build to Ryan Moats and starter Steve Slaton.
A few days after the draft, I was fortunate enought to sit down with Texans director of college scouting Dale Strahm for an enlightening conversation on each of the Texans' eight draft picks. I also asked him for his thoughts on Foster and Johnson, two backs who he said will make a good fit running in the Texans' zone blocking scheme.
Here's his assessment of the two players:
Arian FosterStrahm: "We were really surprised (that he went undrafted). I mean, he's an outstanding runner from an SEC team, the University of Tennessee. Had great production there. More of a power runner. He's got great girth and size. His production fell off a little bit this year because of injury and the team itself. But for him sitting there after the seventh round brings a great value for us and our football team."
Jeremiah JohnsonStrahm: "He is very impressive on tape. He's a very productive back from Oregon. When I watched him on film, he's elusive. He's got a burst. He's shows great quickness. Very productive back. I was really surprised that he was sitting there as a free agent. He has an injury situation (shoulder) that needs to be addressed, but beyond that, this is an excellent candidate for us at the running back position."