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Here's An Odd Stat About The Houston Texans' Inside Linebackers Last Year

When it comes to linebackers, 3-4 defenses generally get pressure on the quarterback from the outside, but the Texans got heat on opposing QBs from their inside linebackers at a higher rate than one might have thought last year. Check out the details and discuss on Battle Red Blog.

More heat up the gut in 2015?
More heat up the gut in 2015?
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Did you know the Texans pressured the QB with their inside linebackers more than 30 other teams last year?

Assuming I am capable of correctly dividing 41 by 16 (and that, my friends, is no sure thing), that means the Texans averaged 2.56 pressures from their inside linebackers per game last year.

2014 was the Texans' first year in Romeo Crennel's system. Houston's inside linebacking corps last season also was without Brian Cushing entirely for two games and, as he made his return from a season-ending injury in 2013 after returning from a different season-ending injury in 2012, it's fair to say that he wasn't the Cushing of old for several of the 14 games in which he did play. Mike Mohamed, Akeem Dent, Jeff Tarpinian, and Justin Tuggle flashed at times, but not to the point that you felt like the Texans had the position locked down for the foreseeable future.

To that end, the Texans drafted Benardrick McKinney in the second round of the 2015 NFL Draft. It's too early to presume that McKinney will be starting next to Cushing when the Chiefs come to town in Week One, but teams generally don't take players that high unless they believe they're going to be contributing quickly and starting in short order (even if Brett's not high on the pick).

With McKinney on board, what should be a healthier Cushing (despite undergoing another three (3!) surgeries since the end of the 2014 season, he says he's "the best physically [he's] been in a while"), and the presence of Vince Wilfork in the middle of the line, do you anticipate Crennel bringing more pressure with his inside linebackers this year?