Quite frankly it’s the first time I’ve done a mailbag, which is just a major mistake. I get questions all the time and try to answer those as soon as possible. But sometimes I get some good questions that I wish I could share with those who might have the same or a similar question.
The mailbag should be a requirement, no?
That said, I always read other authors’ mailbag articles and I’m a huge fan of them. Promise to keep that our little secret?
Either way, let’s dive right in with this week’s mailbag, which is also the inaugural one.
Q: From Patrick
Do you have an early prediction as to who may start at Right Tackle this season? Lots of early predictions leaning towards
A: I got this particular question (or form of) from multiple people. Without doing my advanced Daryl Morey metric study, I surmise that it was the most asked question from everyone, including those pertaining to the quarterback quandary.
With the way the OL played last year, Quessenberry would’ve seen some time on the field, more than likely at left guard when he was penciled in behind former starter Wade Smith. Now, with the change in scheme, it may make more sense to keep him at right tackle.
Does he unseat
As it pertains to Brennan Williams, it’s a shame that he hasn’t been healthy but I don’t think the coaching staff is down on him because of it. Injuries are what they are and the type that Williams endured isn’t one that’s easy to return to 100% form. The coaching staff is frustrated that he’s not there but that’s to be expected when a guy that you want to compete is felled by injury.
Q: From JMay
It's been awesome having you at the Mothership dispensing knowledge.
A: Thank you sir!
Q: My question: With the drafting of
A: Fit is an interesting word and glad that J used it. I say this because there are going to be a number of different situations for all players to fit.
1st down v. power run
1st down v. up-tempo throwing team
3rd down v. long yardage
3rd down v. short yardage
After seeing Clowney numerous times in college, I’m fairly confident that he can set the edge, in addition to have immense burst off the ball rushing the quarterback. Whether that skill set fits on the strong side or the weak side, we’ll know more during camp when the pads go on. But in the end, Mercilus’ improvement against the run is a necessity for this defense. I think the staff will experiment with each on weak/strong side throughout OTA, mini-camps and on into training camp.
As far as on the inside, Bullough will push hard for time at inside linebacker, no questions asked. But again, some of his playing time will depend on Mercilus’ ability to stop the run. If he can, Brooks Reed can perhaps transition inside next to a healthy
That all said, let’s be clear about the fact that the Texans need No. 56 back on the field when it’s time to go or all of this is moot, honestly.
Q: From Richard (@bubbagus73)
Keenum, after studying under O'Brien AND Fitzpatrick for OTA's = Starter, if not lethal, QB with near college like stats? #TeamKeenum
A: I would’ve never guessed that Richard is a
Marc Vandermeer, Drew Dougherty and some others are convinced that the NFL book on Case Keenum hasn't been closed, and I tend to agree with them. Look, the number of quarterbacks that were forgotten, fired, released, cut or kicked to the curb is plentiful. The number of quarterbacks that fought back isn’t. But if anyone has the chutzpah to do just that, I’d put money on Keenum.
I do think that there were unrealistic expectations placed on Case last year by many and when he made a few huge plays early in his starting career, the expectations became a runaway train. Being the local college hero is an immense burden, especially for the all-time leading passing yardage leader in college football history.
The jist of it was that Case was probably not 100% ready to completely take over last year. In a year or two, in that system? Perhaps. Last year wasn’t that year. How does he “take” to O’Brien’s scheme? Better than people think. Enough to be the starter? Let’s circle back in August.
Q: From Todd (@asleepT)
First: I've heard Texans would have drafted Garoppolo at #65/3-1. True? That would mean their QB board was Blake Bortles, Jimmy Garoppolo and
A: I’ve heard that same thing but then again, I hear voices at night, so perhaps I'm not the best to
Q: Second: Can you talk about possibility of Clowney over RG,
A: ALRIGHT! Finally, some X’s and O’s talk. What Todd is describing is a bear 46 front, which some old school Oilers fans will remember from Buddy Ryan’s one year as defensive coordinator in 1993. I could see this as a possibility but I’d like for Clowney to stay on the perimeter as much as possible. I could see a handful other guys playing the 3-technique opposite Watt. The great thing is that there’s some versatility to work with to throw different looks at teams, including Todd’s Bear 46 alignment. Not to mention, if the Texans are facing Tom Brady, it means it’s playoff time!! I’m down for those prospects as I’m sure you are too.