With so little actual news coming out of OTAs at the moment, I'll gladly latch onto anything that will provide a launching pad for discussion about the Houston Texans. Fortunately for me, Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports has gifted us with such a starting point in his latest article for CBS Sports.
La Canfora went through every team in the NFL and declared which member of each organization was "most intriguing" heading into the 2015 season. La Canfora explains the parameters of his analysis as follows:
A year ago I gave my take right about this time on the most intriguing player in each NFL franchise as we inched closer to the start of training camp and actual NFL padded practices. This year, I'm expanding the scope of this exercise to include the most intriguing figure in any organization. It could be a coordinator, coach, owner, trainer, and well, in one instance – in the NFC -- I'd actually go so far as to pick someone not even on the payroll at all.
I wanted to go big picture here, with so many franchises undergoing macro-level issues that frankly will trump anything that any one player does for a team on the field this season. We have teams that could end up for sale, and three teams vying for two spots in Los Angeles. It's far too easy to do a list like this, in this quarterback-driven league, and end up with it overloaded with passers. I wanted to limit myself from going overboard with quarterbacks and try to approach things from a different perspective, in some cases more nuanced, perhaps.
Basically, I'm looking at individuals whose decisions and/or performance on the field or off it could go a long way toward dictating the short-term future of their franchises, if not their entire long-term prospects in the instances where franchise relocations could be involved.
Here's who he picked as the most intriguing member of the Houston Texans organization and his reasoning behind the selection:
Houston Texans--DeAndre Hopkins: The Texans have a playoff roster everywhere but at the quarterback spot, and with face-of-the-franchise Andre Johnson gone from their receiving group, Hopkins will be counted on to elevate the play of others. He's the man in that passing game now, and he is a helluva talent. He and Ryan Mallett seemed to be simpatico in the brief time they played together. He's the fulcrum now. You could make a case for Jadeveon Clowney here, coming back from an injury-marred rookie season, but I think that defense will be fine with or without him.
Given La Canfora's willingness to extend the search beyond players, I probably would have gone with Bill O'Brien as my answer. There is no doubt that what happens at NRG Park is his show, and how it progresses this season will be due in large part to the decisions he's made since he arrived in January of 2014. What say you, BRB?