Texans Mailbag: J.J. Watt Moving Well Plus Can Tom Savage and K.J. Dillon Help in 2017

State of the Texans Mailbag: J.J. Watt is moving well, plus questions on Tom Savage, K.J. Dillon and more.

The lack of public knowledge about quarterback situation with the Houston Texans continues to feed the narrative. With the signs still pointing to Tony Romo, many feel that his injury history is a real issue, which is it. The longer this goes on, the more that support for Jay Cutler has picked up in the Houston area. 

Many are pointing to the more durable Cutler over Romo, however, that perspective is far from the truth.

Is is getting close? 

There have been predictions that the Tony Romo situation would come to a crossroads when the NFL owner’s meetings take place in Phoenix, Arizona next week but CBS Sports and Cowboys Insider, Mike Fisher, is hearing that a deal might come sooner than expected.

Stay tuned. 

J.J. Watt Looking Better than Expected

We know J.J. Watt was cleared to resume his football off-season work prior to Super Bowl week. He was clear that he was being smarter with his training this time around. When Watt came back early from his back issue last season, it was clear he did not have the same explosion off the ball to which most become accustomed over the years. His feet were not as quick and it was clear he was not healthy. 

Watt took to Snapchat to show how well his training is currently going and he appears to having that explosion back in his game.

Reader’s Questions

K.J. Dillion is already running while continuing to recover from the torn ACL he suffered during the season. He is currently taking time out to rehab at NRG Stadium. We will see where he is at in the recover process when OTAs arrive for on-the-field work. As for Joel Heath, he was injured late in the divisional play off game but he too looks like he escaped a long term injury. He is also taking part in rehab at NRG.

K.J. Dillon was worked in early in the season when Quintin Demps went down with a calf injury. Dillion will come up and sting ball carriers from the safety position but he still had his rookie busts; a blown coverage against Minnesota comes to mind but those things are expected for young players. Dillion is more of a box player and has some upside to him. He was a contributor on special teams before the ACL injury he suffered covering a punt. If Dillon can come back healthy, he could be in a spot to expand his role for 2017.

If there is not a capable veteran brought in, all signs would point to Tom Savage being the starter over any rookie and Brandon Weeden. Rookies have a tough enough time hitting the field from day one, so it is hard to imagine a rookie quarterback starting week one under any circumstances. The Texans have shown to start rookies from day one from other position groups, but it is hard to see them doing it with a quarterback especially with all that is on the line in 2017.

At this rate, a rookie at right tackle would be the best plan for the Texans, especially with the out of control contracts for mid-level players on the free agent market. The Texans planned on starting Nick Martin his rookie season and, if they were high enough on a drafted rookie right tackle, I would expect the same. You have to remember that veterans are having a hard time because of past offenses they were in. Re-learning calls, checks, plays, and coaching techniques create a very high learning curve, especially after another offensive scheme has become second natures. A rookie pretty much comes in with a blank slate, giving them their first real NFL system to learn from. I do not think starting a rookie right tackle would be all that bad.

Tom Savage has all the tools to make it happen but his biggest issue has been his health. Also, these injuries have been freak scenarios over his career. He took a low hit on his knee from a defender his rookie season, hurt his shoulder in the final preseason game in 2015 late in the game, in 2016 he had an elbow issue in Green Bay from a night in the hotel which required ed a trip to the hospital to correct, then suffered a seemingly random concussion from an unneeded quarterback sneak. 

The coaching staff knows what Savage has to do to have a chance, which is, he needs to stay healthy. The organization remains hopeful on Savage and what he can do. They have supported him the entire off-season. Bob McNair and Bill O’Brien had a positive outlook on what he can bring. 

The Texans need to find a backup option if they sign a veteran like Tony Romo or roll with Savage. Romo is on the tail end of his career while Savage is entering the final year of his contract. Adding a young quarterback from the top three rounds would give the Texans some insurance going into 2018. 


Related Articles:  Bill O'Brien on the Start of Free Agency | Tom Savage an Option for 2017?Bill O'Brien is Ready to Move on From Brock Osweiler The Good, Bad and the Ugly of the Brock Osweiler Trade | No End in Sight for Tony Romo Situation | Oday Aboushi Signs with the Seahawks  | Texans Notebook: Jay Cutler to Houston? Not So Fast....

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