Shark Bites

Texans K Ka'imi Fairbairn is sidelined with a "minor injury," according to the Houston Chronicle's Aaron Wilson. Houston has signed K Nick Rose as insurance. Avoid this situation in fantasy drafts right now.

Texans WR Keke Coutee is expected to miss "a few weeks" with a hamstring injury, according to the Houston Chronicle. Coutee had a buzzy spring and looked like the favorite for Houston's #3 WR job. But this injury hurts his chances of making an early-season impact. The rookie isn't worth a roster spot in standard-sized redraft leagues.

Texans RB Lamar Miller dropped weight over the offseason and now checks in around 217 pounds. That's a loss of 8 pounds, per team insider Aaron Wilson. “This past offseason, I tried to change my diet," Miller said. "I cut back on eating red meat. I started focusing more on just eating fish and chicken and eating more vegetables, just trying to get right. I know my last two years at the Dolphins, I was around like 218, 217. So, I figured if I get back to my weight, I would feel much better. Right now, I’ve been feeling good.” Miller, of course, showed much greater big-play ability in Miami. He's largely looked sluggish in Houston, posting YPC totals of 3.7 and 4.0. While his O-line is concerning, a leaner Miller should return RB2 totals -- especially with D'Onta Foreman iffy for Week 1.

Texans GM Brian Gaine admitted that RB D'Onta Foreman (Achilles) is iffy for the start of the regular season. "Work in progress right now, recovering from this injury," Gaine said. "We need a little bit more time to determine if he's going to be ready for the season. We're not there at that stage. We think he's getting better. He's improving, but time will tell whether he's available to us when we kick off." Foreman was placed on the active/PUP list to open training camp, making him eligible for the reserve/PUP. That'd cost him the first 6 games of the regular season. At this point, Foreman seems like a long shot to be an early-season fantasy asset. RB Lamar Miller should open the season in a workhorse role. Check out our updated projections for the Texans backfield.

Texans QB Deshaun Watson (knee) avoided the PUP list to open training camp. This was expected after Watson participated in spring workouts and shed his knee brace in June. He's now 9 months removed from tearing his right ACL. Barring a setback, he'll be under center come Week 1. Watson flashed the upside to lead all QBs in fantasy points last year but carries plenty of red flags heading into 2018. He's a risky pick at his 6th- or 7th-round price tag.

Texans RB D'Onta Foreman will open training camp on the active/PUP list as he continues rehabbing last November's torn Achilles. Foreman has been setback-free so far, and GM Brian Gaine said earlier this offseason that he expects Foreman to be ready for Week 1. Still, the 2nd-year back will need to get on the field quickly if he wants to push RB Lamar Miller for early-season touches. Foreman is more likely to emerge as a fantasy factor during the 2nd half of the campaign.

Texans HC Bill O'Brien said Monday that QB Deshaun Watson (knee) is "on schedule" to participate in training camp. Reports on Watson's recovery from last November's torn ACL have been glowing all offseason. He'll be about 10 months removed from the injury when the 2018 campaign kicks off. We'll see whether his mobility is compromised, but it's worth noting that Watson has experience returning from this injury after tearing his ACL at Clemson back in 2014.

Texans HC Bill O'Brien plans to deploy a committee backfield with RBs Lamar Miller and D'Onta Foreman, according to ESPN's Sarah Barshop. Foreman first needs to prove healthy after tearing his Achilles in November. He averaged a decent 4.2 yards per carry before going down. And his last game was his best: a 65-yard, 2-TD effort on 10 carries. Miller, meanwhile, has mustered just 4.0 and 3.7 yards per carry in 2 seasons with the Texans. He should at least remain the team's primary pass-catching back and will be the better early-season fantasy bet. But Foreman could take over as the primary ball-carrier by midseason.

The Texans added Texas Tech WR Keke Coutee in the 4th round of the 2018 NFL Draft. Coutee is 1 of the most electric receivers in this year’s class, with 4.4 speed and loads of wiggle. He averaged 15.2 yards per catch over his 3-year college career and enjoyed a breakout 93-1,429-10 2017 campaign. Coutee ranked 10th in yards per route run among all draft-eligible receivers last year, according to Pro Football Focus. The knocks against him? He’s coming from a pass-friendly, non-pro-style offense. And he goes just 5’10, 181 pounds with sub-5th percentile arm length, wingspan and hand size. Coutee’s big-play ability should translate to the pros if he’s deployed properly, though. He has a shot to slide in as the Texans’ #3 WR behind DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller. Houston is a building a strong WR corps for QB Deshaun Watson.

The Texans selected Central Florida TE Jordan Akins in the 3rd round of the 2018 NFL Draft. He's undersized at 6'3, 249 pounds and is a pure pass-catching TE. Akins spent 4 years trying to make it in minor league baseball before going back to the gridiron. He boosted his yardage each year at UCF, topping out with 515 yards and 4 TDs on 32 grabs this past year. He finds opportunity in Houston with only Ryan Griffin and Stephen Anderson to beat out. Akins is worth a late-round flier in dynasty rookie drafts.

Houston made its 1st pick of the 2018 NFL Draft by taking S Justin Reid in the 3rd round. Some draft analysts projected Reid as a potential 1st-rounder, but ESPN's Louis Riddick pointed out a propensity to give up big plays. We don't mind that as IDP owners, as long as he can put up numbers. Texans safeties haven't done much of that in a while, though, so don't get over-excited.

Texans HC Bill O'Brien told NFL Network's James Palmer that he's installing an "entirely different offense" that will cater to QB Deshaun Watson's strengths while reducing his risk of injury. Houston averaged a whopping 39 points over a 5-game span prior to Watson's torn ACL last year. But O'Brien is hoping to keep his squad a step ahead of opposing defenses making adjustments to Watson and Co. The new scheme will be complicated by the fact that Watson will be spending most of the offseason rehabbing that knee injury. We'll see how much he's able to do in training camp -- and if he's able to get on the field during the preseason. He won't be among the safer picks in 2018 fantasy drafts, but Watson's ceiling extends to the very top of the QB rankings.

Texans GM Brian Gaine said at the Combine Wednesday that he's "optimistic" that RB D'Onta Foreman will be ready for the start of the 2018 season. His rookie campaign ended last November with a torn Achilles -- an injury that can sometimes take a full year to return from. Teams are always optimistic about their injured players at this time of the year, so take this one with a grain of salt. But Foreman's rehab will be worth monitoring closely this summer. If healthy, he has a real shot to emerge as Houston's lead back. Foreman averaged 4.2 yards per carry last year vs. Lamar Miller's 3.7.

Texans QB Deshaun Watson (knee) is on track to participate in OTAs, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. His rehab is ahead of schedule from what was a "clean" ACL tear, per Rapoport. Being available for most of the offseason is significant for a 2nd-year QB. Watson is obviously on pace to be ready for Week 1 of the 2018 campaign.

Texans DE J.J. Watt says things are going well as he works his way back from the broken leg that ended his season in Week 5. “It’s doing really, really well,” Watt said, per ESPN's Sarah Barshop. “[I’m] very excited about where it’s going. I’m on track for training camp. But my assumption is that it shouldn’t be any problem, but if it needs a couple extra weeks, whatever, we’ll take it. From my understanding and from everybody here’s understanding, the way it’s looking, everything’s going really well. There shouldn’t be any issues.” We'll keep an eye on him as training camp approaches. A healthy Watt remains a potentially dominant force both on the field and IDP fantasy football leagues.

Texans WR Will Fuller will undergo "minor" knee surgery, according to insider John McClain. He's expected to be "full go in a few weeks." Fuller was banged up throughout his 2nd NFL season, breaking his collarbone in August, fracturing his ribs in November and then hurting his knee in the season finale. It at least sounds like he'll be ready for the offseason program.

We have our 1st "ahead of schedule" report of the year, folks! Texans HC Bill O'Brien said Tuesday that QB Deshaun Watson is "ahead of schedule" in his rehab from October's torn ACL and could even participate a bit in OTAs. He'll be about 10.5 months removed from the injury when the 2018 season kicks off. It's obviously early, but we're tentatively expecting Watson to be ready come Week 1.

Texans WR Will Fuller suffered a knee injury in the 1st half of Sunday's finale against the Colts and will not return. He finishes with 28 catches for 423 yards and 7 TDs in 10 games. All 7 of Fuller's scores came from QB DeShaun Watson. He'll be a WR3 with upside in 2018 fantasy drafts as long as Watson is ready for Week 1.

Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins (calf) is out for Sunday’s game against the Colts. That leaves Will Fuller as the #1 WR in a plus matchup. But between his inconsistencies and having T.J. Yates under center, Fuller is just a risk/reward WR3.

Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins is dealing with a calf injury and is not expected to play in Sunday's finale against the Colts, according to insider Aaron Wilson. It'll be the 1st missed game of his career. Hopkins leaves behind a whopping 11.6 targets, but they're not worth a whole lot coming from QB T.J. Yates. Houston's passing game is 1 to avoid in Week 17 fantasy lineups.

 
 
 

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