Houston Texans tight end Jordan Thomas wants to improve and he has formed a new ally in training camp. Who is it? Let’s take a look and find out.
Houston Texans fans — we have arrived. The team has finally begun the early stages of training camp and that certainly means that the 2019 season is right on the horizon for us to partake in. To be honest, with all of the news going on with this team — good and bad — this offseason has gone quite fast.
We’ve had drama, we’ve had triumphs and well as low points in terms of the saga that could be deemed with the title “As the Houston Texans turn,” wildly reminiscent — and a play-off of words — for the long-time running soap opera series.
But the good news is that their road to exponential success starts this week on the practice field and there certainly will be some position battles to keep your eye on.
We already know that the tackle position for the offensive line is up for grabs. You will have Seantrel Henderson, Julién Davenport, newly-signed free agent Matt Kalil as well as 2019 draft picks Tytus Howard and Max Scharping all put their names in the hat to get a roster spot at a position that desperately needs help in protecting Deshaun Watson.
Typically it would be kosher to carry three tight ends but with the latest tidbit of information out of training camp, it could be very possible they might carry four. We’ll have to see on that development but I’m certainly not ruling out.
Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle is reporting that Thomas has been working on his blocking in training camp with veteran tight end Darren Fells being his mentor for improvement.
Fells, who was signed this offseason, had a satisfactory 72.9 pass blocking grade with the Cleveland Browns in 2018, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required). That number is light-years better than any tight end that was on the Houston Texans roster for last season.
Here’s what Thomas had to say about Fells:
"“Darren has taken me especially under his wing with him being in the league for a whilenow,” Thomas said. “We talk a lot about blocking, and me and him are getting together over the break. He’s come along and helped me a lot, actually.”"
This will bode well for Thomas, who is still expected to be a deep red zone target for Watson, as it adds to the repertoire of his speed, strength and catching abilities which are his best attributes as
Fells could be retained just in case Bill O’Brien would prefer a steady hand behind the line of scrimmage to help carry out whatever plays that are on deck.
Thomas had a 56.0 blocking grade in 2018, to which was still good for tops among the pack.
Reading this news certainly increases their chances of keeping a fourth tight end on the roster, ensuring they have the depth they need to go the distance.
I’d personally be for the Houston Texans making the move so let’s hope for the best!
Thomas caught 20 balls for 215 yards — 10.8 yards per catch — along with four touchdowns in 2018.