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Texans sign third-rounders

* HOUSTON -* The Houston Texans announced today that they have signed both of their third-round draft picks OT Charles Spencer and OT Eric Winston.  Both players signed their contracts on Sunday, July 22.

Spencer and Winston were the final two members of the Texans draft class to sign, joining DE Mario Williams, LB DeMeco Ryans, TE Owen Daniels, RB Wali Lundy and WR David Anderson.  With all members of the 2006 draft class signed, the Texans continue their record of having every draft choice in franchise history signed before the start of training camp.

Spencer (6-4, 337) was selected by the Texans with the 65 th overall in the 2006 NFL Draft out of the University of Pittsburgh.

Spencer entered Pittsburgh as a defensive tackle, but was converted to left guard after his sophomore season.  During his first year as a full-time offensive lineman, Spencer was named as a second-team All-Big East guard.  He started every game, helping the Panthers offense average 357.8 yards per game on their way to the Big East title and a trip to the Fiesta Bowl.

During his senior season, Spencer shifted to left tackle where he was named second-team All-Big East for a second consecutive year.  The Pittsburgh offense averaged 335.8 yards per game last season.

Winston (6-7, 310) was drafted by the Texans with the 66 th overall selection in the 2006 NFL Draft.  He became the second offensive tackle Houston selected in the third round, joining Spencer, who was taken one pick ahead of him.

Originally from Midland, Texas, Winston was recruited to the University of Miami as a tight end.  During his freshman season, he caught two passes for 13 yards.  He outgrew the position and was moved to tackle during his sophomore year, where he started every game.  He finished with 46 pancake blocks, ranking second on the team.

Winston started four games in 2004 before tearing his ACL and prematurely ending his season.  He returned to form during his senior year as a dominating tackle.  He helped the offense average 353.1 yards per game while allowing only 3.5 sacks during the entire season.  He earned first-team All-ACC and second team All-American accolades.

In order to make room on the roster for the two rookies, the Texans have released S Jamaal Lord and FB Nick Luchey.

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