The third week of our Rosterology segment and we FINALLY have some football to talk about. While it was more enigmatic than clear cut and obvious, several players shined in their first professional football experience.
Most noticeably, several rookies got their run on the field Saturday. Fourth-round pick Dameon Pierce was the brightest spot with five tenacious carries. Undrafted rookie and darling of Rosterology Johnny Johnson III scored the winning TD. And undrafted free agent (UDFA) Kurt Hinish and late-round pick Thomas Booker IV recorded sacks.
Jordan Jenkins and Chad Beebe were cut yesterday and BJ Emmons and Harrison Elliot were waived, thinning down the roster to 87.
LAST FOUR IN:
Tristin McCullum, DB (note - undrafted rookie FA)
MJ Stewart, S
Andy Janovich, FB
Johnny Johnson III, WR (note - undrafted rookie FA)
FIRST FOUR OUT:
Jimmy Morrissey, OL
Justin McCray, OL
Jalen Reeves-Maybin, LB
Kendall Sheffield, CB
Scott Quessenberry, honorable mention to Blake Cashman
Jenkins’ injury and missed game on Saturday resulted in him getting cut. That bodes well for the swath of veterans the team added this offseason.
Notable players who didn’t play and it didn’t help their cause: TE Antony Auclair, Mario Addison, DB Kendall Sheffield, and C Justin Britt.
Scott Quessenberry started over Jimmy Morrissey; and with grey-haired Justin Britt sitting out this game he went from the third string to first overnight. After missing his block on the first play, he settled in and was a strong mover of men in the run game.
Cashman was noticeably all over the field in significant action in the second half. With Christian Kirksey, Christian Harris, and Garret Wallow all MIA, Cashman cashed-in (I’m so sorry, I had to) with the added reps.
McCullum, my personal favorite from the UDFA, played well in his limited role.
Davis Mills, Kyle Allen
ANALYSIS: Jeff Driskel played the majority of the snaps this game, yet looked rather shaky from the get-go. Only until the third and fourth tier players came on did Driskel look relatively calm. A 65.9 rating isn’t anything to get hyped about and will remain a reason to not keep him on the roster.
RUNNING BACKS (4)
Marlon Mack, Rex Burkhead, Dameon Pierce, Andy Janovich
ANALYSIS: Pierce’s five carries were the highlight of the game. He brought the tenacity and balance fans have been salivating for. The fullback position will be a priority to watch. Though after rewatching, the Texans used tight ends for a significant portion of the blocking assignments. Andy Janovich didn’t have a good game and the position is completely up for grabs. He finds himself in the Last Four In.
WIDE RECEIVERS (6)
Brandin Cooks, Nico Collins, Phillip Dorsett, Chris Conley, Chris Moore, Johnny Johnson III, WR (note - UDFA)
ANALYSIS: Last week: “Don’t rule out Johnny Johnson III to upset several veterans and make the team.” This week? Yeah, he’s going to be on the team. This Friday? PROOF IN THE PUDDING.
Phillip Dorsett is not helping his case one bit. Meanwhile Jalen Camp’s TD looms large heading into the second game. Not enough to make a switch, but enough to keep an eye on.
TIGHT ENDS (3)
Brevin Jordan, Pharaoh Brown, Mason Schreck
ANALYSIS: Not the most impressive game from Brevin Jordan. There were missed blocks, below average blocks, and only one target. Pharaoh Brown didn’t have too much of an impact on the game either. With both Auclair and Quitoriano both out, this position is in dire straits.
OFFENSIVE LINEMAN (9)
Laremy Tunsil, Kenyon Green, Justin Britt, AJ Cann, Tytus Howard, Austin Deculus, Scott Quessenberry, Max Scharping, Charlie Heck
ANALYSIS: Last week we said “With Britt in-and-out, Morrissey’s place feels more consistent”, which immediately gets thrown out the door. Scharping played a ton of snaps and cannot contribute to the run. Justin McCray didn’t overtly improve his chances and has a long way to go.
DEFENSIVE ENDS (5)
Jonathan Greenard, Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, Mario Addison, Jerry Hughes, Rasheem Green
ANALYSIS: Jordan Jenkins release is noticeable and propels veteran Rasheem Green into a stronger role. Watch out for a free agent or two to be added: Kinglsey Keke
DEFENSIVE TACKLES (4)
Roy Lopez, Maliek Collins, Ross Blacklock, Thomas Booker
ANALYSIS: Thomas Booker played well and recorded a sack. Blacklock once again got moved easily. Look out for UDFA Kurt Hinish as mentioned earlier. He could surprise some fans. Texans could save over a $1.5 million by making this decision.
Christian Kirksey, Garret Wallow, Christian Harris, Kamu Grugier-Hill, Kevin Pierre-Louis, Neville Hewitt
ANALYSIS: Blake Cashman and Jalen Reeves-Maybin stole the show on Saturday combining for 14 tackles. Tae Davis forced a fumble that lead to the Texans game-winning drive. Yet they are stuck in the deepest pool the Texans have. KPL could be in trouble, but can this group take on more than six players?
Derek Stingley Jr., Tremon Smith, Steven Nelson, Desmond King II, Tavierre Thomas
ANALYSIS: This is by far the hardest position group to pick. Saturday did more to exclude people than anything else. Fabian Moreau and Isaac Yiadom did not do themselves many favors. Jacobi Francis played well, but may have gotten away with a few things. Kendall Sheffield also missed out on meaningful reps and subsequently drops off the roster
Jalen Pitre, Eric Murray, MJ Stewart, Terrence Brooks, Jonathan Owens, Tristin McCullum
ANALYSIS: The rookie Pitre looks to be off to a good start. Though this is among the weakest groups we’ve got. No changes here unless an injury over the next week or a player gets added to the roster.
SPECIAL TEAMS (3)
Ka’imi Fairbairn, Jon Weeks, Cameron Johnston