The Houston Texans are ready for a great position battle this offseason between incumbent starting right tackle Derek Newton and North Carolina Tar Heels rookie tackle Brennan Williams. Although Williams doesn’t have the best technique and will likely need some time to develop, Williams will definitely push Newton for the starting job and has a fair shot at winning it. Newton is not a quality starter by any means, and he is most likely the weak link of this offensive line.
According to Texans beat writer Nick Scurfield, Texans head coach Gary Kubiak has stated that Derek Newton will not be healthy until training camp. Kubiak also added that this is a “Great chance” for Brennan Williams to shine in OTAs and get valuable time to learn the offense and, possibly, get an edge over Newton. You would have to think that this would carry over very well for the rookie once we head into his training camp battle with Newton.
Newton’s knee injury costed him only two games last season, but he did need patellar tendon surgery last month and was never expected to make it to OTAs. He was, however, always expected to make it in time for training camp, and I think Newton will hold off Williams for the starting gig for now. However, Williams does offer considerably more upside than Newton and is more athletic and possesses at least a comparable frame. But, again, the third-rounder out of UNC still needs some polishing, and I think the Texans can count on Newton for another season. He isn’t as bad as I made him out to be in the first paragraph, because the rest of the Texans offensive line is exceptional. If Williams does impress the Texans staff enough, though, then it is certainly within the realm of possibility to see him usurp Newton.
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