Texans rookie RB Dameon Pierce loved 26 carries in Sunday's win at Jacksonville, turning them into 99 yards and a TD. He also ranked 3rd on the team with 5 targets, catching 3 for 14 yards. Pierce again dominated Rex Burkhead in playing time and continued to lead him in pass routes.
Texans RB Dameon Pierce had another disappointing outing in Week 2, racking up 35 total yards on a combined 18 touch opportunities vs. the Colts. The second-year back is still by far and away the Houston backfield leader, though. Teammate Devin Singletary only saw 5 touches, and fellow RB Dare Ogunbowale’s pair of carries didn’t make much of a dent. Fantasy managers should be encouraged by the volume that Pierce sees weekly, though tempering expectations from here on out will be vital. Week 3 vs. the Jaguars will provide Pierce another opportunity to improve.
Texans OC Bobby Slowik said he should have given RB Dameon Pierce more work in Week 1. The second-year man tallied only 11 carries in a blowout loss. “DP should touch the ball more than he did,” Slowik said. “That's definitely something we want to do. That's our starting identity. We're here to run the ball.” Houston should be able to stick with the run on Sunday as they head home to face Indianapolis. Pierce projects as a top-24 option in our Week 2 RB rankings.
Texans beat writer Jonathan M. Alexander believes the ground game will be the “focal point” of new OC Bobby Slowik’s offense. RB Damien Pierce leads the attack after an eye-opening rookie campaign. “For us to be a good offense, we have to have Dameon at his A-game,” Texans HC DeMeco Ryans said. “Dameon has been having a great offseason from OTAs to even now. He looks great and in shape. Every time he touches the ball, you see the speed and physicality.” Now, Pierce has his eyes set on hitting 1,000 rushing yards. “I definitely want to cap 1,000 (yards rushing),” Pierce said. “Slowik expects that, everybody around me expects that and I’m going to try everything in my power to get that.” The 23-year-old hits our fantasy RB rankings as a top-24 option.
Texans RB Dameon Pierce became a workhorse as a 2022 rookie, taking 74.3% of the team's rushing attempts over his 13 games. For the year, he ranked 10th among all RBs in opportunity share (carries plus targets). Pierce's rushing-efficiency stats provided mixed messages. He tied for 12th in yards after contact per attempt and ranked second in elusive rating, according to Pro Football Focus. But Pierce finished just 37th in Football Outsiders' rushing DYAR and DVOA, among 42 qualifying RBs. He also sat 19th or lower in points per game across fantasy formats. A weak O-line and poor passing offense certainly didn't help. We're betting on more efficiency from Pierce in Year 2. But you should also expect the team to lighten his workload after importing RB Devin Singletary. See where both players sit in our 2023 RB rankings.
Texans RB Dameon Pierce has improved his pass protection ability this offseason, according to RBs coach Danny Barrett. "He can now see the big picture and can identify things quicker to get to his pickups," Barrett said. "That's going to help us out tremendously. When he is in the game, teams think we are going to just run the football. But his ability to pass protect, he understands what is needed in our passing game from him." QB C.J. Stroud has also been impressed by Pierce's pass pro skills, Sports Illustrated's Coty M. Davis writes. As a rookie last year, Pierce ranked 73rd among 81 qualifiers in Pro Football Focus' pass-blocking grades, allowing a pressure on 21.3% of opportunities. That was part of the reason he averaged a just-ok 3.0 targets and 2.3 catches per game. It sounds like Pierce is a candidate to take on a bigger role in the passing game this year, although he'll need to fend off free-agent addition Devin Singletary. We'll be keeping a close eye on Houston's backfield all summer.
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