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Vandermeer's View: Fan Mailbag


Fans sent the following questions in for a chance to win a Royal Purple and Texans Prize pack.

And, I guess, for me to answer them. So here we go…

*Marc, *

Thank you for your great play-by-play calling of the games. I really enjoy hearing you and Andre, you're a great team.

I noticed during the pre-season that the special teams coverage on punts and kickoffs seemed quite better than the past few seasons. Is this due to coaching, new younger players, or just and improved attitude and more enthusiasm?

Thanks always, I'll be turning down the TV sound and listening to you and Andre whenever I can.

*Michael Insley, New Braunfels, Texas

*Thanks Michael!  And for those who want to know, I did NOT edit Michael's email to say those nice things. Special teams is a huge emphasis for this staff. And they mix it in to their practice schedule in different ways than I've seen in years past here. Bill O'Brien just told me today that very often you can pin turning points of games on special teams' big plays or mistakes. Let's see what happens when they play for real.


So the Texans picked up Travis Labhart on the practice squad. He was fun to watch in the preseason. I think he would fit well as a slot receiver. Any chance he gets a shot after the team dropped Mike Thomas?


*Labhart certainly made a great impression during the preseason. It's now his job to portray receivers on the upcoming opponent, as a member of the scout team. He'll have a great chance to move up if there is an injury but his job is to hone his craft and give the defense a good look at what they'll be facing each weekend.

*I sent this in a tweet, but with the stadium name change, what are we gonna change the "Reliant Leap" to? *

-Frank Carrera

Frank, I'll go with NRG Jump. How does that work for you?

What three things will you be looking to see during game one that will give you confidence that the Texans will have a great year in 2014?

Kirby Cronk

Kirby, way to make me work!  Health is the most important thing in life and in football. So that's a given. Forcing turnovers and protecting the ball is key as well. Ryan Fitzpatrick must play well for this team to succeed. All eyes are on him Sunday as he takes the helm of the most talented team he's ever been on.

Is Ryan Mallett getting more reps in practice to get up to speed on the playbook, and is this taking away from Tom Savage's reps?

Dear Guy-with-no-name (actually, we have his email address), Mallett appeared to be getting the usual number two reps in the practices time that I've observed. The job of the staff has been to get Fitzpatrick as ready as possible for Sunday.

Ok, what decides the game this week, how the Texan's offense plays against the Redskins defense or how the Texans defense plays against the Redskins offense?

Bill Stephens

Bill, I will say it's about stopping RGII and Alfred Morris. I think the offense should have some relatively good production at home. Griffin, with a good running game and all that firepower at receiver, has big play capability that must be contained by Romeo Crenel's bunch.

Bill is our winner. Have a great weekend!

Go Texans!

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