The Texans were extremely fortunate to have all five of their offensive lineman start every game last season, a rarity in the NFL. Even more of a rarity is the man known as Chester Pitts, who has started every single game in the Texans seven year history. Unfortunately, Pitts underwent arthroscopic surgery on both elbows this past summer. The good news is that Pitts is progressing fine and should be good to go when training camp comes around. The injury concern could always rear it's ugly head for the Texans, as they could any other team, but there is decent depth along the line. Third round pick Antoine Caldwell can play both guard and center and recently re-signed Chris White is versatile as well. The team shouldn't be worrying about injuries any more than other similar teams.
In the endless wait between mini-camp and training camp, few Texans players are sitting around aimlessly. In fact, many are still frequently visiting Reliant Stadium and conditioning coach Ray Wright as they prepare for the upcoming camp. Duane Brown is working hard to reach an optimum playing weight, while others such as Connor Barwin are still getting acclimated to the new scheme they'll be playing in.
Darnell Jenkins has reportedly impressed the coaches with his work ethic and in the process has become a much better player than last year, when he was cut before the season started. This could be even more bad news for Jacoby Jones. If Brice McClain shows any burst and creativity at all in the return game, Jenkin's improvement could be the final blow to Jones' chances of sticking with the team. Even if he has dedicated himself to working hard, it won't get him anywhere unless he improves as a receiver, which we've heard little of (granted, it's still early). It will be hard for Jones to make the opening roster.
Antonio Smith is as anxious as ever for the upcoming season. In the interview, Smith describes himself as "disruptive" and "dominant". Some may consider this arrogance, but it's a far cry from the words of Chris Johnson. Smith isn't declaring he's going to be the MVP of the league or a coaches dream like Johnson. Instead, he's confident of the opportunities he'll receive playing alongside a guy like Mario Williams, who he believes is a rare athlete. It's also nice to hear Smith using words to describe himself that are the exact opposite of what Anthony Weaver was for the Texans.