Houston Texans star running back Arian Foster is rounding into form after dealing with a hamstring injury, as he’s putting in more work in during practices in joint sessions with the Denver Broncos. Texans head coach Bill O’Brien stated earlier today that Foster has put in a “good week”, and he’s a safe bet to put in a good season, especially if he can stay healthy. He underwent an awful lot of wear-and-tear as the Texans lead back under Gary Kubiak and Rick Dennison, and he ended up missing half of the 2013 season. Foster also saw his role as a pass-catcher decrease, which was a shame given the success he had as a pass-catcher from 2010-2012 (66, 53, and 40 receptions in those years).
According to ESPN NFL Nation’s Jeff Legwold, O’Brien looks ready to give Foster “plenty of work” as a pass-catcher out of the backfield, based on what Legwold, who covers the Broncos, has observed today in joint practices. This isn’t a surprising observation, but it’s good to hear confirmation from another team’s beat writer that the Texans plan looks to be feeding Foster the ball more in the passing game.
The Texans quarterbacks could all use some nice checkdown options, and an elite running back definitely qualifies as that. Hopefully Foster’s snaps will be managed, but this will be the first season since 2010 in which Foster has an increase in receptions from the pervious season (at least, I hope it is). With the tight end position looking incredibly deep, the Texans offense isn’t short on safety valves, though Andre Johnson is obviously the safest pair of hands.