We’ll carry general manager Rick Smith’s 12:15 press conference live, and then have him in studio after to dissect the pivotal three days approaching at the end of the week.
Daniel Jeremiah of the NFL Network will join the show as well for his weekly segment.
Play-by-play voice Marc Vandermeer will host, and I’ll be in studio with Nick Scurfield as well.
Don’t miss it!
Tags: Daniel Jeremiah, Marc Vandermeer, Nick Scurfield, Rick Smith
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Tuesday from noon to 2 p.m. CT on ‘Texans All Access’, it’s a power-packed show hosted by Marc Vandermeer. General manager Rick Smith sits down with Texans TV’s Drew Dougherty, and shares his thoughts on the team’s Draft board and how it’s shaping up.
Assistant defensive line coach Jeff Zgonina will stop by the studios to chat about the new gig, working with the best defender in the NFL in end J.J. Watt and much more.
Plus, Amanda from the Houston Texans Cheerleaders will join the show to give an update on 2013 tryouts.
Tags: Drew Dougherty, Jeff Zgonina, Marc Vandermeer, Rick Smith
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This year, for the first time ever, we’re working with Google+ and the Pro Football Writers of America to give one lucky fan a chance to ask a question during the Houston Texans’ press conference. It’s Thursday at 3:30 p.m. CT with general manager Rick Smith and head coach Gary Kubiak.
If you’re interested, submit a question on Google+ and Twitter using the hashtags #CombinePlus and #Texans.
One fan question will be selected, and the answer will be recorded live and available on-demand shortly after the press conference. We’ll announce the lucky winner here on the Houston Texans Google+ page, along with the video of the Q&A.
Learn more HERE.
Follow us on Twitter @HoustonTexans and on Google+ at http://google.com/+HoustonTexans
Tags: Combine, Gary Kubiak, Rick Smith
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On Tuesday, running backs Ben Tate and Justin Forsett headline the Verizon Players Show live at 8 a.m. CT from the Verizon retail location near Uptown (1670 Post Oak Boulevard).
Later Tuesday, visit Gallery Furniture at the I-45 N location for the Arian Foster Show from 6-7 p.m. CT. The show is followed by Texans Live (7-8 p.m.) and Texans Replay (8-9 p.m.), which features a condensed version of the audio calls from the team’s Week 12 win at Detroit. Learn more about Texans Replay here.
Don’t miss Texans Live on Thursday at 6 p.m. CT. Texans general manager Rick Smith will join the program to discuss the latest team news heading into the AFC South matchup at Tennessee.
Remember, you can listen to every Texans Radio program live on SportsRadio 610, HoustonTexans.com and the FREE Houston Texans Mobile app. Text TEXANS to 51288 to download.
Tweet with #TexansRadio to have your questions answered on air.
Tags: Arian Foster, Ben Tate, Justin Forsett, Rick Smith, Texans programming, Texans Radio
Posted in Nick Scurfield | No Comments »
TEXANS WITH CONNECTIONS TO COLORADO
OLB Jesse Nading (Highlands Ranch; Colorado State); Offensive Coordinator Rick Dennison (Rocky Mountain H.S. in Fort Collins; CSU); OL Coach John Benton (Durango/Colorado State); Offensive Assistant Dan Hammerschmidt (played at CSU from 1982-85 and coached there in 1986, 1997-2006 and 2010-11); DB Coach Vance Joseph (played at Colorado from 1990-94 and coached there 1999-01 and 2002-03); Assistant WR Coach Marc Lubick (coached at CSU from 2000-02 and 2005-09).
BRONCOS WITH CONNECTIONS TO TEXAS
G/C Philip Blake (Baylor); LB Von Miller (DeSoto, Texas A&M); G Manny Ramirez (Houston, Texas Tech); C J.D. Walton (Baylor); Defensive Coordinator Jack Del Rio (played for Dallas Cowboys 1989-91); Special Teams Coordinator Jeff Rodgers (Westlake H.S.; North Texas); TE Coach Clancy Barone (coached at Texas State, University of Houston and Texas A&M); Secondary Coach Ron Milus (coached at Texas A&M); DL Coach Jay Rodgers (Austin); WR Coach Tyke Tolbert (Conroe).
FORMER BRONCOS ON THE TEXANS
C Chris Myers (2005-07); T Ryan Harris (2007-11); Executive Vice President of Football Operations and General Manager Rick Smith was an assistant defensive backs coach for the Broncos from 1996-99 before working in the personnel department from 2000-06; Head Coach Gary Kubiak (played for the Broncos, from 1983-91 and coached there from 1995-2005); Offensive Coordinator Rick Dennison (played there from 1982-90 and coached there from 1995-09); Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips (head coach from 1989-1994); QB Coach Karl Dorrell (coached there 2000-02); WR Coach Larry Kirksey (coached there in 2004); TE Coach Brian Pariani (coached there from 1995-04); Assistant OL Coach Jim Ryan (played there from 1979-88 and coached there from 2004-08); Head Strength and Conditioning Coach Cedric Smith worked there from 2001-06; Director of Football Operations Doug West was the head equipment manager for the Broncos from 1993-2003.
FORMER TEXANS ON THE BRONCOS
TE Joel Dreessen (2007-11); NT Mitch Unrein went to training camp with the Texans in 2010; LB Coach Richard Smith (was Texans defensive coordinator from 2006-08).
TEXANS-BRONCOS COLLEGE CONNECTIONS
Texans RB Arian Foster (2004-08) played at Tennessee with Broncos DE Robert Ayers (2004-08) and P Britton Colquitt (2004-08); Texans CB Brice McCain (2005-2008) played for Utah with Broncos G Zane Beadles (2005-09); Texans ILB Mister Alexander (2006-10) played for Florida State with Broncos CB Tony Carter (2004-08); Texans OLB Jesse Nading (2004-07) played for Colorado State with Broncos TE Joel Dreessen (2001-04) and QB Caleb Hanie (2004-07); Texans CB Brandon Harris (2008-10) played for Miami with Broncos T Orlando Franklin (2007-10); Texans NT Earl Mitchell (2006-09) and OLB Brooks Reed (2007-10) played at Arizona with Broncos FB Chris Gronkowski (2007-09); Texans TE Owen Daniels (2002-05) played for Wisconsin with Broncos S Jim Leonhard (2001-04); Texans WR Andre Johnson (1999-02) played for Miami with Broncos RB Willis McGahee (2000-02); Texans C Ben Jones (2008-11) played for Georgia with Broncos RB Knowshon Moreno (2006-08); Texans G Andrew Gardner (2005-08) played for Georgia Tech with Broncos WR Demaryius Thomas (2006-08); Texans LS Jon Weeks (2004-06) played for Baylor with Broncos C J.D. Walton (2006-09); Broncos WR Matthew Willis (2005) played at UCLA when Texans QB Coach Karl Dorrell (2003-07) coached there; Texans ILB Bradie James (1999-02) and P Donnie Jones (2000-2003) played at LSU when Denver QB Coach Adam Gase (2000-02) coached there; Dorrell (1992-93) coached at Colorado State with Broncos OL Coach Dave Magazu (1992-94); Dreessen (2001-04) played for Colorado State when Texans OL Coach John Benton (1995-03) coached there; Broncos DT Mitch Unrein (2005-09) played at Wyoming when Texans Offensive Assistant Dan Hammerschmidt (2009) coached there; Hanie (2004-07) played at Colorado State when Hammerschmidt (2001-07) and Texans Assistant WR Coach Marc Lubick (2005-07) coached there; Broncos DT Justin Bannan (1997-01) played at Colorado when Texans DB Coach Vance Joseph (1999-01) coached there; Texans Assistant LB Coach Bobby King (2006-07) coached at Baylor when Walton (2006-09) played there.
TEXANS-BRONCOS PRO CONNECTIONS
Texans RB Justin Forsett (2008) played for Indianapolis with Broncos RB Lance Ball (2008), TE Jacob Tamme (2008-11), and QB Peyton Manning (1998-2011); Texans P Donnie Jones (2007-11) played for St. Louis with Broncos DT Justin Bannan (2011); Texans QB John Beck (2009) played for Baltimore with Bannan (2006-09); Texans CB Alan Ball (2007-11) and ILB Bradie James (2003-11) played for Dallas with Broncos LB Keith Brooking (2009-11); Texans QB Matt Schaub (2004- 06) played for Atlanta with Brooking (1998-08); Texans CB Johnathan Joseph (2006-10), K Shayne Graham (2003-09), and T Andrew Gardner (2011) played for Cincinnati with Broncos WR Andre Caldwell (2008-11); Graham (2010) played for New England with Broncos CB Tony Carter (2010) and C Dan Koppen (2003-11); Ball (2007-11) and James (2003-11) played for Dallas with Broncos FB Chris Gronkowski (2010); Texans FS Danieal Manning (2006-10) played for Chicago with Broncos QB Caleb Hanie (2008-11); Texans FS Quintin Demps (2008-09) played for Philadelphia with Broncos LB Joe Mays (2008-09); Beck (2009) and Gardner (2010) played for Baltimore with Broncos RB Willis McGahee (2007-10); Texans NT Shaun Cody (2005-08) played for Detroit with Broncos G Manny Ramirez (2007-10); Forsett (2008-11) played for Seattle with Broncos WR Brandon Stokley (2010); Jones (2005-06) played for Miami with Broncos DT Kevin Vickerson (2006); Graham (2002) played for Carolina when Broncos Head Coach John Fox (2002-10), Defensive Coordinator Jack Del Rio (2002) and Offensive Coordinator Mike McCoy (2000-08) coached there; Texans WR Coach Larry Kirksey (2003) coached at Jacksonville with Del Rio (2003-11); Texans ILB Tim Dobbins (2008-09) played for San Diego when Broncos Barone (2007-08) coached there; Schaub (2004-06) played for Atlanta when Barone (2004-06) coached there; Jones (2007-11) played for St. Louis when Milus (2006-08) coached there; Jones (2005-06) and LG Wade Smith (2003-05) played for Miami when Richard Smith (2005) coached there.
Tags: Brian Pariani, Cedric Smith, Chris Myers, Dan Hammerschmidt, Doug West, Gary Kubiak, Jesse Nading, Jim Ryan, John Benton, Karl Dorrell, Larry Kirksey, Marc Lubick, Rick Dennison, Rick Smith, Ryan Harris, Vance Joseph, Wade Phillips
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On the injury front, linebacker Brian Cushing returned to practice Thursday after missing the previous three days with a sore knee. Cushing called it “as minor as they come; a bruise at most,” and Kubiak said it was important to Cushing to be back on the field before the end of OTAs. Wide receiver Trindon Holliday also practiced Thursday after injuring his ankle last week.
Quarterback Matt Schaub (foot), wide receiver Andre Johnson (knee) and linebacker Darryl Sharpton (quad) did not participate in OTAs as they rehabbed from injuries. Rookie nose tackle Hebron Fangupo missed all but part of the first day after injuring his knee.
“I feel good about Matt and where he’s at,” Kubiak said. “I think he could be practicing right now. Andre is probably a little further behind Matt right now. Loni (Fangupo) will be back. Probably the biggest question mark right now is Sharpton. Looking at where we’re at, Sharpton could not come out and practice right now. He needs to be in there battling with Bradie (James) for a starting job. Probably that’s my biggest concern right now, seeing that he’s 100 percent and can go out there and compete for a job.”
Kubiak said his biggest concern coming out of OTAs is the Texans’ young wide receivers. Aside from 10-year veterans Andre Johnson and Kevin Walter, none of the Texans’ receivers have caught an NFL pass.
“I like the ability, as I’ve told y’all all along,” Kubiak said. “Bottom line, none of them have been in games, and so that’s going to be a concern until we get going. The picture looks different when Andre is out here and Kevin is out here and you have those veterans leading the way. Throughout the course of these OTAs, it’s strictly young guys. That’s a concern. It’s something we’ll continue to address with our team as we move forward.”
Kubiak wouldn’t say Thursday that Lestar Jean, who worked as a starter during OTAs with Johnson sidelined, has established himself as the team’s number three receiver. He doesn’t know if the team will keep six wideouts on the 53-man roster, saying, “it depends on what we are come September.”
The Texans also have questions at fullback, where second-year pro Derrell Smith has worked behind James Casey after spending last season on the practice squad at middle linebacker. Kubiak said Thursday that Smith has “very good” hands.
“I feel good about him,” Kubiak said. “He’s behind mentally. He’s a defensive player trying to play offense, so that’s tough, but nobody is working harder. I think the future is very bright, but it just needs to happen quick. He’s behind, but that’s not his fault. That’s us changing his position.”
The Texans will have a kicker competition through training camp between rookie Randy Bullock, who was perfect in his first competition in front of the team and has consistently boomed kickoffs 6-7 yards deep in practice, and veteran Shayne Graham, who signed with the Texans in May.
The Texans are also looking for a kick returner to replace Jacoby Jones. Safety Danieal Manning suggested Thursday that he won’t return kicks in 2012. Wide receivers Keshawn Martin, a rookie fourth-round draft pick from Michigan State, and DHolliday, a third-year pro out of LSU, appear to be the frontrunners for the job.
“That’s one thing you can’t really tell until you start playing, but I thought Keshawn looked like a natural with what he was doing,” Kubiak said. “Trindon is the best he’s been as a player going into this camp as a pro. It’ll be competitive, and then the young man that we picked up (running back Justin Forsett) looks like he’s going to be able to help us there, too. We’ll see how it comes out.”
The Texans have three open spots on their roster, meaning there’s room for them to sign free agents at positions such as wide receiver and tight end between now and the start of training camp in late July.
“I’m concerned about the youth of the receiving group, which we keep talking about,” Kubiak said. “We’ve normally had a physical tight end around here to go with O.D. (Owen Daniels). We don’t have that presence right now. That’s something (general manager) Rick (Smith) and I are looking at.
“You just asked me a question about our fullback. I know what James can do, but I’m counting heavily on a young man (Smith) who hasn’t played there. Those are some of the things right now and just the new faces that are going to be the new leaders along with the leaders we have to go with this team. Like I said, it’s a totally different team. It’s going to start taking on an identity as we get going here.”
Tags: Andre Johnson, Bradie James, Brian Cushing, Danieal Manning, Darryl Sharpton, Derrell Smith, Gary Kubiak, Hebron Fangupo, James Casey, Justin Forsett, Keshawn Martin, Matt Schaub, Organized Team Activities, Owen Daniels, Randy Bullock, Rick Smith, Shayne Graham, Trindon Holliday
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Reports emerged that Jones, an undrafted free agent from North Carolina, had quit the team. According to the Houston Chronicle, Jones told Texans officials he no longer wants to play football.
“Dwight’s struggling a little bit today,” Texans coach Gary Kubiak said after practice. “He’s a young man with a lot of information (being thrown) at him, so we’ll talk to him this afternoon and see where we’re at. That’s why he’s not here, but he’s OK.”
Jones (6-4, 230) is one of 11 receivers on the roster and one of three undrafted rookies at the position. He likely would be a long shot to make the team, but he’s a talented player who was singled out by general manager Rick Smith as one of the Texans’ undrafted rookies to watch.
Jones, 23, had 85 catches for 1,196 yards and 12 touchdowns last season at North Carolina. He ran a 4.55 40-yard dash and had a 33-inch vertical jump at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Tags: Dwight Jones, Gary Kubiak, Organized Team Activities, Rick Smith
Posted in Nick Scurfield | 5 Comments »
Texans head coach Gary Kubiak had a big smile on his face when he found out wide receiver Rod Smith was elected to the Denver Broncos Ring of Fame on Thursday.
Kubiak was Smith’s offensive coordinator in Denver from 1995-2005, winning back-to-back Super Bowls in Smith’s first two seasons as a starter in 1997 and 1998.
“I’m not surprised,” Kubiak said in his office at Reliant Stadium. “Of all my time in Denver, obviously we had some great players through those championship years, but no greater example of what it is to be a pro and be a great leader and a great Bronco than Rod Smith, in the community and on the field.”
Smith went undrafted out of Missouri Southern State in 1994. After a year on the Broncos’ practice squad, he made the active roster in 1995, Kubiak’s first season on the Denver coaching staff.
Smith went on to set Broncos franchise records in receptions (849), receiving yards (11,389) and receiving touchdowns (68) in a 12-year career that featured three Pro Bowls (2000-01, 2005) and eight 1,000-yard seasons. He will be inducted into the Ring of Fame at halftime of the Texans’ Week 3 game at Denver on Sept. 23.
“He was a free agent who made his way up through football the hard way and then became a great player,” Kubiak said. “I still recall that big play (80-yard touchdown catch) he made in the Super Bowl against Atlanta, but he made many of those. For me as a coach, he was always the guy in the meeting room that held things together. I can’t tell you how many times I would get upset or something and he would walk over to me and tap on the shoulder and say, ‘I got him,’ or, ‘I got it,’ like, ‘I’ll go take care of that; you don’t worry about it.’ Great man, great person, great football player. Very happy for him, and I guess that’ll be exciting to see when we go down there.”
Smith’s best two seasons came in 2000 (100 catches, 1,602 yards, 8 TDs) and 2001 (113 catches, 1,343 yards, 11 TDs).
“Rod was an unselfish player,” Kubiak said. “Did a lot of dirty work for our football team, kind of like Kevin Walter does for the Houston Texans, as a blocker and those types of things. Here’s a guy who went from a free agent to a leader of a World Championship football team, and you can’t say much more than that.
“He’s a prototype football player. That’s what you’re looking for. A lot of guys have talent. There are guys that can run 4.4 and there’s guys that can run 4.6 and play like they’re 4.4, and that’s what Rod was. He played faster – he played better – than everything said he was supposed to play. He was very smart, had it all under control and did it all in one place for many years. That doesn’t happen very often nowadays, so hats off to him.”
Texans quarterbacks coach Karl Dorrell was Smith’s wide receivers coach in Denver from 2000-02. Texans general manager Rick Smith, offensive coordinator Rick Dennison, tight ends coach Brian Pariani and wide receivers coach Larry Kirksey also were on Denver’s staff during Smith’s tenure with the team.
Tags: Brian Pariani, Gary Kubiak, Karl Dorrell, Kevin Walter, Larry Kirksey, Rick Dennison, Rick Smith
Posted in Nick Scurfield | 2 Comments »
In a very informative appearance on “Texans All Access” on Tuesday on SportsRadio 610, Texans special teams coordinator Joe Marciano gave a glowing review of rookie safety Eddie Pleasant.
Pleasant, an undrafted free agent from Oregon, was previously mentioned by general manager Rick Smith as a player the Texans had contemplated drafting. Marciano seconded that notion, and then some.
“We’ve got Eddie Pleasant, who we really liked,” Marciano said in response to a question about UDFAs who could make an impact on special teams. “We thought we were going to draft him. That’s another story for another day, but we had him and his card was picked; we were ready to take him. I already gave him a nickname. His name is ‘The Missile.’ He seeks in on the target and he just takes off and hits it. He’s a very, very exciting player. I’m excited about him to come in and see what he can do.”
Pleasant (5-10, 211) was a three-year starter at Oregon, starting his career as a linebacker and emergency running back. He didn’t play safety until his junior year with the Ducks but blossomed as a senior in 2011, recording 61 tackles, three interceptions and 11 passes defensed en route to first-team All-Pac 12 honors. He posted a 4.63 40-yard dash, 33.5-inch vertical jump and 22 bench press reps of 225 pounds at the NFL Scouting Combine.
The Texans currently have eight safeties on the roster: 2011 starters Danieal Manning and Glover Quin; 2011 contributors Troy Nolan, Quintin Demps and Shiloh Keo; 2011 practice squad player Torri Williams; and undrafted rookies Pleasant and Desmond Marrow (Toledo).
Four safeties were on the Texans’ active roster on opening day in 2011 (Manning, Quin, Nolan and Dominique Barber). There could be room for five this year, since the Texans had seven cornerbacks in Week 1 last season and now have only six corners on the roster. It’ll be a tough group to crack, but it certainly sounds like Pleasant has a legitimate chance.
Tags: Danieal Manning, Desmond Marrow, Eddie Pleasant, Glover Quin, Joe Marciano, Quintin Demps, Rick Smith, Shiloh Keo, Texans All Access, Torri Williams, Troy Nolan
Posted in Nick Scurfield | 8 Comments »
Texans chairman and CEO Bob McNair said Monday that he plans to start working on contract extensions for head coach Gary Kubiak and general manager Rick Smith, whose contracts expire after the 2012 season.
McNair said he does not have a timetable for completing the extensions. He will likely meet with Kubiak first and Smith second.
“We’ll start working on that,” McNair said at the Texans’ 10th annual Charity Golf Classic. “I think they’ve done an outstanding job. I’m pleased with ‘em, and if that wasn’t the case, we wouldn’t be extending ‘em.”
Kubiak and Smith have both been with the Texans since 2006. Kubiak signed a two-year extension after the 2010 season. Smith signed a four-year extension in 2008.
The Texans are coming off a franchise-best 10-6 season, their first-ever trip to the playoffs and their first AFC South title. They have been .500 or better in four of Kubiak and Smith’s six seasons with the team.
“It’s hard to play if you don’t have a coach or general manager, so I guess I need to take care of it,” McNair said. “There’s no sense of urgency, but we want to go ahead and deal with it and put it to bed.”
The Texans’ Charity Golf Classic, presented by Verizon, is expected to raise more than $350,000 for the Houston Texans Foundation. The Foundation raised $840,000 for the Houston community in 2011.
Tags: Bob McNair, Gary Kubiak, Rick Smith
Posted in Nick Scurfield | 4 Comments »