Vandermeer's View: Last House on the Left


Don't dismiss the fourth preseason game as a 'non-starter' event. This baby carries more drama than any of the other three. Men are fighting one final time for NFL jobs. Some will be playing in their final game. It won't be the retirement ceremony they were hoping for.

The rookies who make the team are often in shock about what happens over the final week of the preseason. A 90-player roster shrinks to 53, plus the practice squad.

I remember the very first Texans preseason when Dom Capers told me David Carr found it tough to see teammates shown the door. College players are used to being around each other for years. In the NFL, the incoming class gets a few months. Then, most are gone.

This is what Charles James pointed out so well on Hard Knocks when he talked about getting cut if you don't make plays. He knows. James tried to initially make it with the Giants but didn't. HBO has given him 15 minutes of fame. His work ethic and playmaking ability just might get him a gig with the Texans.

We also get one more chance to see Tom Savage. Not that he's going anywhere. However, if we see him again this season either something went very wrong or he will have continually torched the Texans number one defense as scout team quarterback. But seriously folks, Savage is obviously better and is

showing the improvement trajectory of someone who will be in this league for a while.

He finally has something in his football life that's been missing; continuity. He went through three college programs. Now he's in a stable situation and he's making the most of it. He implemented a consistent off season routine, including getting up at 4:45 every day in order to train and up his game. The results speak for themselves so far.

It'll be interesting to see how the Texans handle tight ends tonight. With Khari Lee traded to Chicago, and so many players resting, expect some four wide sets and tackle eligible plays so they won't have to play Ryan Griffin as much, if at all.

The really tough cuts could be at inside linebacker, defensive line, cornerback and wide receiver. We'll highlight all the battles on tonight's broadcasts (SportsRadio 610, ABC 13). 

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