They aren't there in person, but Texans fans are attending training camp practices in spirit. And on paper.
Because of COVID-19, fans aren't allowed to cheer on their squad at the Houston Methodist Training Center, and they won't be allowed into NRG Stadium Week 1 when the Texans host the Ravens.
But there are Season Ticket Member and Lady Texans on a photo collage, along with banners showing their support from afar. Each day on their way back to the locker room after practice, players have Zoomed with fans and signed 'virtual autographs'.
It's all part of the organization trying to include their fans, as well as remind the players of the fan support.
Photos of Season Ticket Members line the walkway at Training Camp! Although fans can not be at camp in person, their presence is important!
"We wish the fans were out here and I know the fans wish they were out here," defensive end J.J. Watt said. "We're sending our best to them and we appreciate their support and everything they do to support us."
Photos were sent in from some season ticket members, and the organization printed them up and placed them on the fencing around the field. It was free of charge, as a small token of appreciation from the organization.
After Friday's practice, quarterback Deshaun Watson signed virtual autographs for fans via Zoom. He was happy to do so, and explained why.
"For us to be able to continue to show our support because they're going to continue to show their support even though we have to do it virtually and it's a little different vibe this season starting off," Watson said. "It's good for us to have opportunities to give back in different ways and still support our fans."
When games get going, Watt said the Texans will be ready.
"We look forward to putting a good product on the field for them to cheer for and get loud for," Watt said. "It's a tough time. Everybody in the country is going through a very difficult time. If we are able to do this and be successful with this and put on a performance this season, I think it's going to be great to give people a chance to escape and get away and have a sense of normalcy."
The Texans have Sunday off, and will resume training camp practice on Sunday at the Houston Methodist Training Center.