Throughout a normal week of football in the regular season, there are press conferences, open locker room player availability, player interviews for Texans TV and Texans Radio, did I mention press conferences? Sometimes a few interesting nuggets of information, not even related to football, stand out over the course of the week. These are just a few of those mini-stories, or, as fancy authors call them, vignettes. I'm not claiming to be one of these fancy authors but I do hope some of these vignettes are entertaining and perhaps leave you wanting more.
1. An early All-Rookie Team? No such thing.
Is it too early to be putting Hall of Fame gold jackets on NFL rookies through four games? Yes.
Is it too early for The Athletic to publish an All-Rookie Team for 2022? Apparently not.
This week, The Athletic released the first (of likely many) All-Rookie Teams and four Texans rookies made the list (impressive!): RB Dameon Pierce, OL Kenyon Green and DBs Jalen Pitre and Derek Stingley Jr. We are are here for it and co-signing this list.
I'll save you the click and tell you what the Athletic NFL Draft Staff had to say:
"Pierce (Round 4, No. 107) stood out as a potential draft steal the second he slipped to Day 3. He's matched that buzz, establishing himself as an early Offensive Rookie of the Year candidate with 313 yards rushing (135 more than Hall), two TDs and 10 receptions on 10 targets. On Sunday, he ripped off a 75-yard touchdown run against the Chargers as part of a 131-yard day."
"(Tyler) Linderbaum (Baltimore) and Green were dealt tough hands with camp injuries, but they've rebounded. It's all there for Green to be a stud — but as was the case in college, there are still technical issues to iron out. Once he does, look out."
"Those top two choices of Gardner and Stingley — picks 4 and 3, respectively — haven't forced a turnover yet, but quarterbacks already are approaching them with caution. Gardner has five pass breakups, and Stingley came out of the blocks with a combined 15 tackles and three PBUs over Weeks 1 and 2."
"Pitre's another player whose success is no real surprise, based on what we saw from him at Baylor. Similarly to (Jaquan) Brisker (Chicago), Pitre is a fearless safety who can line up in the box and not get destroyed. He's going to stick his nose in, he understands run fits, and he can cover. It's been an encouraging start for both guys."
2. Bringing The Flintstones into 2022
Bamm-Bamm is the son of Barney Rubble, Fred Flintstone's best friend and also the nickname of Texans fullback Troy Hairston.
Last week, Laremy Tunsil told me that the offensive line calls the rookie Bamm-Bamm because "he gets it done." This week, I asked Hairston how he got the nickname. Hairston, who has been playing football since the age of six, says his parents originally came up with Bamm-Bamm because of his nonstop energy. But in a team meeting, OC Pep Hamilton called Hairston by the old nickname and it just stuck. Again.
For what it's worth, Hairston said he did watch Flintstones as a kid.
3. "What's the deal with the mums?"
Speaking of Pep, he's faced the Jaguars defenses over the years as the Colts offensive coordinator. This week, he addressed the media in his normal Thursday press conference, along with Special Teams Coordinator Frank Ross and Linebackers Coach Miles Smith. Catch up on the notable takeaways here.
Afterwards, Hamilton (who has a high school son playing quarterback in Pearland) asked the media an age-old question that non-Texans ask when their kids are attending homecoming for the first time.
"What's the deal with the mums?"
I learned about this myself when my first-born was a high school freshman. Mums are a Texas homecoming tradition. Teenage boys assemble (or purchase) this life-size corsage that hangs around your date's neck like a literal albatross made of tissue paper, ribbons and dangling charms. If you think I'm exaggerating, just LOOK:
I don't get it either, but Texas loves its high school football and hot-glue gun art.
4. Texans' win streak vs. the Jaguars
Some quick facts about the Texans-Jaguars series over the years, according to NFL Research:
Texans vs Jaguars (Since 2018)
- The Texans' 8 straight wins vs the Jaguars is the longest winning streak vs Jaguars by any team in NFL history
- T-4th-longest active win streak by any team vs single opponent (Top 3: KC 13 straight over DEN, PHI and NE 12 straight over NYJ)
- Also according to NFL Research (and just basic math, really), Trevor Lawrence was a high school senior in 2017, the last time the Jaguars beat the Texans.
5. Homecoming with moms, not mums
Dameon Pierce will be making his return to Florida this weekend. His mom will attend her second game of his NFL career. I asked Pierce if he was excited to go back to where he played college ball.
"I'll play football in the parking lot if I had to," he said.
No need for that, the Texans will be playing inside TIAA Bank Field on Sunday. Kickoff against the Jaguars is at noon CT on CBS and SportsRadio 610.