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Texan in Japan
01-29-2005, 05:06 AM
As fans/arm-chair GMs, we should be considering how our current players may improve next season...prior to drooling over FAs or predicting draft picks. I'll take a stab, any feedback other ideas appreciated.

1. Seth Wand: With one full year of starting and three years in our strength program, he is entering a very important point in his Texans' career. If he progresses well and grasps zone blking scheme, I think we'll stay with him. However, I'm concerned that Carr will be exposed to more beatings and would prefer we invest in insurance (like Walter Jones). I'm pulling for Seth and hope he comes into his own this year.
2. Jason Babin: A fierce pass-rushing machine in college, he played well while learning 3-4 style. I think next year he'll be more natural and make more plays.
3. Chester Pitts: Transition from OT to OG and new scheme hampered his progress. I'm hoping next year, he'll be a dominator.
4. Derrick Alexander: Really had some moments this year. Believe he'll only get better from hear and be a nice option in redzone.
5. Jabbar Gaffney: Has become Carr's third-down go-to guy. He's becoming invaluable.
6. Dunta Robinson: Can he get much better? You bet, next year he makes everyone realize the mistake they made by not recognizing him this year.
7. Tony Hollings: This is my reach, but if he can condition himself better and not get injured, perhaps the two years of watching and learning the trade will finally pay-off for us. He would be a nice change of pace to DD.
8. Benny Jopru: OK, he either becomes Boselli II or finally gets his butt on the field and adds new dimension to this team. Lord knows we need a complete TE.
9. Antwan Peek : The demon is finally unleashed and through still unrefined, he becomes the difference-maker (OLB) defense needs on the field at all times.
10. Earl/Coleman: This duo will jell and our secondary will be awesome! Last year's experience should only make them both better.
11. Milford Brown: May finally become RG we're looking for...finished strong.
12. Kendrick Starling: smooths out rough edges/loses jitters and makes run on KR and fourth WR spot.

Given the above, I'd be targeting DL/OL, TE, team speed, RB, KR/PR, LB in FA and draft. I'd really like a DE like Shaun Cody or Spears; and another NT. In addition a big, athletic C and maybe another LT (if Wand doesn't improve).

Did I miss anyone? Oh, looks like Ragone will be our Back-up QB...hopefully he has a good camp/preseason.

Honoring Earl 34
01-29-2005, 10:57 AM
I hope the most improved duo is the Wand/Pitts combo. I can't say Joppru cause he can't improve he has'nt played. I believe we need to assign someone to monitor Benny's groin. Maybe start a site Benny's groin .com. Then we can have Tony Holling's knee . com. I am not touching Benny's groin.com. :shocked

wolf123
01-29-2005, 11:08 AM
I definatly see some texans have huge progress next season.
1. David Carr- it's his fourth season and he should really excel if for once we give him some time in the pocket.
2. Seth Wand- This guy didn't play as bad as everyone believes he had only a few bad games and they were all against freeny and freeny kill everyone this year.
3. Jason Babin- with a whole year under his belt he should definatly come into his own next year.
4. Tony hollings this guy is a tremendous athelete and all he needs to do is stay healthy.

F-minus67
01-29-2005, 01:34 PM
1. Wand - he has already shown that he can run block, so all he has to do is get a stronger punch and work on he passblocking.

2. Gaffney - with all the attention that AJ is going to get, odds are he will get more balls thrown his way.

3. Earl - after playing well less than a year after he tore his ACL, he will make the next big step.

4. Babins - with a year in the system and an off season to practice he will be a lot better.

AndreJ
01-29-2005, 01:48 PM
4. Derrick Alexander: Really had some moments this year. Believe he'll only get better from hear and be a nice option in redzone.


I read that and i couldn't figure out who in the world you were talking about for a few minutes then it hit me. I beleive you were talking about Derrick Armstrong. Anywho yeah I like this guy alot too and he has come up with some big catches, but I think we also have to consider that many of those have been against the other teams 4th CB's. I would like to see what he could do as the #2 or #3 reciver, but i thought i'd just point that out.

Vinny
01-29-2005, 03:19 PM
Anywho yeah I like this guy alot too and he has come up with some big catches, but I think we also have to consider that many of those have been against the other teams 4th CB's. I would like to see what he could do as the #2 or #3 reciver, but i thought i'd just point that out.Armstrong and Gaffney will be our slot guys, and we are set at the slot. Gaffney and Armstrong are solid, dependable players as is Stokley in Indy. Both are suited for curls, slants, seams, working linebacker zones and short out patterns. The Texans need speed on the edge to keep the defense honest and to make them pay for rolling the S to AJ's side constantly. Personally, I feel the team will sign a veteran WR for the edge and will not take a WR in the draft.

Good thread.

I like the upside to Earl and Babin as guys who may be 'most improved'. I have my fingers crossed with Joppru and Hollings.

MIGHTYTEX
01-29-2005, 05:13 PM
"I like the upside to Earl and Babin as guys who may be 'most improved'. I have my fingers crossed with Joppru and Hollings."


I agree, but I think the most improved Texans next year will be the O-line as a whole

AndreJ
01-29-2005, 05:16 PM
I really do hope that is the case.

Texan in Japan
01-29-2005, 05:19 PM
AJ - You're right, I meant "Armstrong."

Vinny - Thanks. I agree on Gaf/Arm, but I'm not sure if we'll get the speed if we sign a vet. Unless we look at Porter or Buress...most speculation says, Gardner or M2 (CAR). I've never been impressed w/Gardner. M2 would be great if we believe we're headed to play-offs next 2-3 yrs...which I'm hoping is true!

Texan in Japan
01-29-2005, 05:20 PM
Mighty T - I'm hoping w/yr in the zone blocking scheme and maybe a brute at center we'll be much improved.

Grid
01-29-2005, 05:32 PM
1. Jason Babin. Led the team in QB pressures. Give him an offseason to work on his technique and get more familiar with the season and I think he is gonna be our sack leader next season.

2. Wand & Pitts. I think Wand is going to do well.. he was strong this last season but not great.. now that he is the starter he is gonna have alot more put on his shoulders this offseason.. if he handles it well, we could see a big improvement next season. I think Pitts is gonna be one of our best linemen in the future.. the move to OG wasnt a huge thing for him since that what we drafted him to play.. I think the only thing that messed him up was the zone blocking.. an offseason to familiarize himself with it will get him back on the right track.

3. Armstrong. If we grab another WR to take Bradfords place, and also manage to fix our TE problem.. when exactly do we plan on using Armstrong? I think the staff knows we have a great player here and they are gonna get him on the field more, rather than letting him rot on the bench. I look to see him used more next season. Keep in mind that the only reason we didnt see him as much in the second half of the season as we did in the first half, is cause he got injured for a 2 or 3 game stretch there.

4. Domanick Davis. With the Oline working.. if DD is healthy, I look for him to light up our running game. He is a playmaker when he gets the ball and is at 100%.. if next season is the season he manages to STAY at 100%.. he will be a force.

5. Robaire Smith. With babin playing better.. I look for Smith to have an even better season. the strong side of our Dline is looking really good.

Honorable Mentions

Kendrick Starling. Will we send him to Europe? (i think we should) This guy could be our future #2.. but I dunno if it will be next season or not. If he can become more consistent, and get a bit more playing time.. he could turn some heads.

DaShon Polk. Could he win the ILB job from Foreman? he looked fairly good to me.

Earl. I liked what I saw but I wonder about his coverage skills.. was he at 100%? I dont know.. but if he can continue to improve.. and can cover AND do what he was doing in run support and such.. he could be a lock at SS for the rest of his career.

Joppru. if he steps onto the field during a game, that would be an improvement over the last two seasons :P. SO, he doesnt have to do much to improve.. but WILL he ever step onto a field? god I hope so.




Guys I am not expecting to do much


Milford Brown. Finished strong? if you mean he managed to suck even more at the end.. you are absolutely right. We should start calling him slash.. like whats his name up in Pittsburgh. Cause this guy is a revolving door slash penalty machine.

McKinney. He just didnt seem to fit in a zone blocking scheme. Can you teach an old dog new tricks? Im not optimistic about it.

Walker. Injuries are no excuse for his play last season.. I think hes hit his wall.. retirement is looming.

Glenn. I think he will continue to be a solid CB, but I dont expect to see any improvement out of him.





And finally.. the guy who doesnt fit in a catagory.


Dunta Robinson. Could him improve? if he does im gonna be really surprised cause he was already awesome. Could he get worse? yes.. he could hit a sophmore slump and im worried about that. A repeat performance is all i ask.

Grid
01-29-2005, 05:35 PM
oh and I forgot.. under improved.

Andre Johnson. With the line improving next season (fingers crossed).. Carr gets more time to throw to his go-to guy. Andre Johnson just needs the ball sent his way.. he can handle the rest. We saw him "disappear" towards the end of the year.. and it wasnt his fault, we just could not get the ball to him enough with our Oline stinking up the place. Next year he will hit 1300-1500 receiving yards.. and be in the top 5 WRs in the league. write it down.

Texan in Japan
01-29-2005, 06:45 PM
I was wondering if Walker couldn't play some NT for us? He was a tackle in the 3-4 and he hasn't gotten any faster with age. Maybe he could factor into the rotation if we drafted a guy like Shaun Cody or Spears to play DE.

Grid - Absolutely agree on 1-5.

Being in JP it's very difficult to watch many Texans' games, but from what I read it was my understanding that Milford Brown did a pretty decent job of opening holes for DD after Weigert went down. Is that incorrect?

As for Dunta, his soph stats may go down because opposing offenses stay away from him. As for the jinx, I bet he'll blow past that with the fire NFL voters gave him when Vilma was voted top defensive rook.

TexanBacker93
01-29-2005, 06:51 PM
I'd have to agree that Wand and Pitts being 2nd and 4th year players both need to get to the next level of performance or they will have to be replaced.

Babin and Peek look to be a dynamic duo on the outside during passing situations.

Earl and Dunta give the Texans a good young nucleus in the deep backfield.

I don't think the Texans would look at Spears or either Cody. Even though DL is definitely an area that needs addressing I don't think any of them are good fits as ends in a 3-4. They'd all be too small. Looking at the draft there really isn't a 3-4 type lineman that should go in the 1st round. I would like to see Johnson fall and add him to the Babin, Peek, Sharper mix. That would be a nice group of linebackers.

AndreJ
01-29-2005, 07:01 PM
I don't think the Texans would look at Spears or either Cody. Even though DL is definitely an area that needs addressing I don't think any of them are good fits as ends in a 3-4. They'd all be too small. Looking at the draft there really isn't a 3-4 type lineman that should go in the 1st round. I would like to see Johnson fall and add him to the Babin, Peek, Sharper mix. That would be a nice group of linebackers.

Spears and Cody are both about 6'4 and both around 295. I say put on about 5-10 lbs and they would be a great choice for a 3-4 DE with speed. When I look at the great teams in the NFL who use the 3-4, their D-Lineman aren't exactly huge. I think that the Texans might have the biggest 3-4
D-Lineman in the league and we obviously aren't getting any pressure with them.

Also watching the Senior Bowl I liked what I saw from Spears, he has alot a patience and awareness. The announcers also said that he may move down to about the Top 15 in teh draft. I wouldn't mind having him here, but I would take DJ over him if he was available at 13.

I can see him falling down that far.

Texan in Japan
01-29-2005, 07:39 PM
TB 55 - I agree w/AJ that both Spears and Cody would fit in our 3-4. I also think that they'll both grade out in top 20 of draft.

THE_HONKEY_TONK_KID
01-29-2005, 11:08 PM
How can you guys have a list of most improved and not have D-Rob at #1? I mean here is a rookie coming in a starting from Day 1, and by the end of the season we could practically put him on an island and we could depend on him to do his job.

#2--Glenn Earl: Took over the starting job in the middle of the season, still recovering from knee surgery, and did solid at his position. We can count on him to be bigger, faster, stronger and a solid starter coming back in 2005.

#3--Robarrie Smith: This guy started playin in a new system in a new position and was the best player on the DL. He made some big plays and freed up some lanes for the LBs to do their job.

#4--David Carr: This guy did a lot for this team this season. He won games in the middle of the season when there was no running game with the OLine looking horrible and no DD at full steam, and still won 2 games at the end of the season when guys named AJ and JG where gone fishing. He still got thrown to the ground a lot, but managed to get up after every one.

#5--Seth Wand: Imagine this. Its your first season in the NFL coming from a small college who maybe runs about 50 plays the entire season. You come into the NFL where you realize your not in Kansas anymore. You get all of this **** thrown into your face and you learn and get better. But then comes the next offseason where some new guy comes in, says forget everything that you have been taught, and learn my stuff and get a whole bunch of new **** thrown at you and still be able to start every game of the season and show a lot of potentinal.

AndreJ
01-29-2005, 11:14 PM
How can you guys have a list of most improved and not have D-Rob at #1? I mean here is a rookie coming in a starting from Day 1, and by the end of the season we could practically put him on an island and we could depend on him to do his job.


It's because the people were posting about who they think should improve the most from this season to next. D-Rob has done such a great job this year that I'm not sure if there is any room for him to improve. I'm worried about his production dropping, but I highly doubt it will happen. He has alot to prove to the rest of the country seeing as how he gets no respect and I think he's up for the challenge. We here in houston know what he is capable of.

THEFUTURE
01-29-2005, 11:57 PM
Honkey Tonk, you need to start reading things better man, this is like the tenth different thread that you didnt comprehend the correct meaning of, when you read stuff, read it right. people dont want to have to go around correcting you when you misinterpret the meaning... dont want to sound like a jerk, just a lil tired, and frustrated...but still the point is you need to actually read what your looking at man

THEFUTURE
01-30-2005, 12:02 AM
oh and to answer the post, i want Davis to be able to just want the team healthy, thats what i want, if everyone stays healthy... i think the line will play better, not saying there doesnt need to be changes, then if the line plays better, its better holes for DD and more time for Carr, if Carr gets more time, the receivers will look better, and i really do pray that bennie can stay healthy... i know we get impatient, but how much do you think he hates the fact that he can't go out and play and contribute... he has to be dying just sitting all year... thats all i want out of 2005, i think we have enough talent to make a push to the playoffs if were healthy, but if we have to go digging into our depth chart for players, it will hurt us, cuz our backups arent great quality backups like other teams have, except for at our LB and at the WR spots i think is where we have the most quality depth as of now

bckey
01-30-2005, 09:52 AM
Armstrong and Gaffney will be our slot guys, and we are set at the slot. Gaffney and Armstrong are solid, dependable players as is Stokley in Indy. Both are suited for curls, slants, seams, working linebacker zones and short out patterns. The Texans need speed on the edge to keep the defense honest and to make them pay for rolling the S to AJ's side constantly. Personally, I feel the team will sign a veteran WR for the edge and will not take a WR in the draft.

Good thread.

I like the upside to Earl and Babin as guys who may be 'most improved'. I have my fingers crossed with Joppru and Hollings.

I agree 100% with all that Vinny. I would like to see us sign one of the premium free agent OL on the market this offseason also but I know cap space is not what it used to be.

Texan Gal 312
01-30-2005, 08:50 PM
I agree with the one's mentioned and really hope we are right on Pitts/Wand.

No one mentioned Ramon Walker. He missed all of last season but was our best special teams player the prior year. - a playmaker. Could he also push for playing time at Safety ?

Charlie Anderson - a defensive end in college so he is making the conversion to linebacker. Managed to show enough to the coaches this year to get himself some playing time. With another offseason he should make some giant leaps on the learning curve.

BornOrange
01-30-2005, 10:10 PM
ON DEFENSE
1. Babin and Peek. I think these two guys are going to develop into the pass rushers we have been waiting for and will have at least 16 sacks between them.

2. Earl. After the draft it was uncertain if he would even get off of the IR this year, and he ended up claiming the starting spot. With a year of experience he should be even better.

3. Robinson. The fourth youngster on defense and probably already the best defensive player on the team. I see him being more consistent and playing at a high level the entire season.

4. Walker. After a Pro Bowl season in 2002 he missed most of 2003 with injuries and was slowed by injuries in 2004. He won't be at the same level as 2002, but he will be better next year.

ON OFFENSE
1. Wand and Pitts. These guys have the talent. A year of experience together and at their current positions will really help.........we all hope.

2. Carr. If the line gives him time, he could compete for a Pro Bowl spot. Seriously. He was fifth in the AFC in passing yards behind Green, Manning, Plummer and Brady. With better protection alone his yardage and touchdown numbers should go up and interceptions go down. Add another year of experience and next year could/should be Carr's breakout year.

3. Palmer's reputation. If Carr can get some blocking, I think the Texans offense will be one of the better ones in the league. Of course, the Palmer bashers will ignorantly claim that the Texans should have been opening up the offense all along and that Palmer only loosened things up because he was afraid of losing his job, again not seeing the elephant in the room that is the pourous offensive line that has been holding back the offense all along.

TexansTrueFan
02-02-2005, 11:59 AM
i think babin played OK last season but truly needs to use his hands more and improve his pass rush skills. But he was excellent stopping the run the whole season. Him and peek should make a dangerious squad come next season !

TheOgre
02-02-2005, 12:09 PM
Armstrong and Gaffney will be our slot guys, and we are set at the slot. Gaffney and Armstrong are solid, dependable players as is Stokley in Indy. Both are suited for curls, slants, seams, working linebacker zones and short out patterns. The Texans need speed on the edge to keep the defense honest and to make them pay for rolling the S to AJ's side constantly. Personally, I feel the team will sign a veteran WR for the edge and will not take a WR in the draft.

I hope we take a veteran as well. If we wanted to draft someone to replace Bradford, we should have done it last season. We need someone that can step in and play outside opposite AJ right away.

TexansTrueFan
02-02-2005, 12:18 PM
well if we cant find our want any veteran fast outside recievers than maybe we should keep bradford, i mean he does still have the speed, carr just needs more time and maybe we can get him the deep ball a little more often !

TexansTrueFan
02-02-2005, 01:33 PM
babinmania huh i like that. they need to come out with babin halloween costumes, all them tats can get scary !

F-minus67
02-02-2005, 03:23 PM
besides the spin move does babins have any other pass rush moves? because maybe he can pick up some moves from Sharper and Peek.

TexansTrueFan
02-02-2005, 03:30 PM
he just needs to work on his hands, so he can use them to get past linemen as well, cause he does spin a lot more than i think he needs to !

DominatorDavis
02-02-2005, 05:21 PM
My feeling this off season is that we need to draft and acquire free agents in every area on both sides of the ball where there exists a weakness. Guys need to develop and be rock solid or this team will be forever labled as "expansion". Should we draft a left tackle? you bet. Do we acquire a another high level tight end? without a doubt. Do we pick a defensive tackle in the draft? He should be first on the list.

This is not about "giving guys time" to get better. We are past that time now. They have to be better and I think that this year (2005) we will cross that threshhold.

Our development as a team has been steady and our core guys allow us to focus our efforts onto the weaker parts of the team. That is exactly what management will do.

El Tejano
02-02-2005, 05:25 PM
[QUOTE=DominatorDavis]

This is not about "giving guys time" to get better. We are past that time now. They have to be better and I think that this year (2005) we will cross that threshhold.

Amen to that!!! :coolb:

Cincinnatikid
02-02-2005, 07:02 PM
I think rookies coming in need time to develop, you cant say they dont, its a difficult adjustment. Veterans do not need the time but the rookies have to learn new schemes on this defense, many times new positions like Peek and Babin, so you do expect them to take some time to develop. I think that those two OLBs will show that they have become ready. It is frustrating when your team isnt doing as well as you want, but you also have to be realistic. Also the oline, no big excuses, did have to learn a new scheme this year that was foreign to them. I think that this team will show great improvements next year with a couple key pickups, namely Lineman on both sides, and either moving wong to ILB or drafting one. I dont want a new OLB, I was Peek and Babin and those two will combine for at least 20 sacks if they both start. Guaranteed!

Texan in Japan
02-03-2005, 07:06 AM
We have a pretty solid team, but we need more defensive playmakers o the line. Guys that make things happen draw attention and thus open up opportunities for others. I'd really like a disruptive DE who can stop the run, but also pressure the QB. A guy like that will help Robaire, Babin, Peek, Dunta, etc.

Next, I'd really like a Haus-like C...like Baas. He could hold the point of attack against the biggest inside lineman and as Vinny says help the pocket actually form.

TexansTrueFan
02-03-2005, 11:28 AM
yeah i rookies do need a little time to develope, i mean everyone cant be like big ben. But the only reason he was so good is cause the solid players he had around him, and its a little different on defense !

DominatorDavis
02-03-2005, 05:43 PM
I should prefface my earlier point. Of course rookies need time. They need time to develop when there is no one else behind them to compete for the starting position other then a weaker player, a street free agent or another rookie. In other words when the team has no choice but to play them. So yes I agree with some of the earlier points stating that.

Having said that, if there is a player that we can get - at some level, whether it be via free agent, trade, or by draft, which will institute a talent laden player in a position that has in the past, had less then desirable results, then that is a good thing for the strength of the team. If that means supplanting a younger or older player - so be it. The idea is to improve. A team does that by making these types of judgement calls.

So more candidly I would ask - who do you place in the starting line up? The guy who is really good right now or the guy who could be good?

Or better yet, who do you keep on the team? A guy who can right now provide you with a starting role on some level or a guy who might be good enough for the team if he develops?

One would assume that the answer is self evident.

I just think that with where we are as a team that we are past the developmental point at most positions. Some players are just good enough to beat out a developmental guy. There is still room there, but these types of situations are becomming fewer and fewer on this team. As it is, they there - sure, but it is getting tougher to be a developmental guy and make this team. That was my point.

In order to keep these developmental players in the loop the NFL created the European league.

It speaks volumes, but it does not bode well for Dave Ragone that he has been allocated there.

TexansTrueFan
02-03-2005, 06:01 PM
i would have to agree with some of your assesment, if it is a old player with 1 MAYBE 2 more years left that i say you put in the young guy now, or atleast get him some PT to let him develope, and it really depends on the position,,,,for instance it is much more difficult to come in and play QB than it is to come in and be a defensive tackle. Same goes for a WR vs a cornerback ! So depending on the type of position or the age of the more "experienced" player. I'd have to say that sometimes a rook starting could be a good thing, and sometimes like our OL not such a good thing !

Grid
02-03-2005, 06:07 PM
I think people are reading WAY too far into Dave Ragone being sent to europe.

B.J. couldnt go cause he is injured. We need a QB with some experience to back up Carr.. This is a great way for Ragone to get that experience. I honestly dont think we sent him to give him one more try :P.. we sent him to get him some game time.

TexansTrueFan
02-03-2005, 06:11 PM
ya know ragone looked pretty good in the pre season, not like he had a chance to show us what he could do this year (i'm glad) but i think from his first year to just what i saw this pre season he had made some progress !