August 30, 2015

Houston Texans

AFC South

2014 Schedule

  • Week 1

    WAS @ HOU


    1:00 pm

  • Week 2


  • Week 3

    HOU @ NYG


    1:00 pm

  • Week 4

    BUF @ HOU


    1:00 pm

  • Week 5

    HOU @ DAL


    1:00 pm

  • Week 6

    IND @ HOU


    8:30 pm

  • Week 7

    HOU @ PIT


    8:30 pm

  • Week 8

    HOU @ TEN


    1:00 pm

  • Week 9

    PHI @ HOU


    1:00 pm

  • Week 10


  • Week 11

    HOU @ CLE


    1:00 pm

  • Week 12

    CIN @ HOU


    1:00 pm

  • Week 13

    TEN @ HOU


    1:00 pm

  • Week 14

    HOU @ JAC


    1:00 pm

  • Week 15

    HOU @ IND


    1:00 pm

  • Week 16

    BAL @ HOU


    1:00 pm

  • Week 17

    JAC @ HOU


    1:00 pm

PYRO Fantasy Depth Chart

The PYRO Fantasy Football Depth Chart is a rundown of where Team PYRO projects the fantasy production for each team at each position. It is NOT an attempt to inform you of the current starters for each team. For example, we are well aware that Brandon Manumaleuna is currently the starting TE for the Chicago Bears, but if you look at the Bears Team Page, we have Greg Olsen listed at TE. Why? We’re projecting that Greg Olsen will be the most Fantasy Football relevant TE for the Bears this season. Since Olsen will be the Bears leading FF point scorer at TE, it’s his name at the top of the TE column on our PYRO Fantasy Depth Chart.

Houston Texans - 2014 Preseason #FF Preview




“Your typical city involved in a typical daydream

Hang it up and see what tomorrow brings


Dallas, got a soft machine; Houston, too close to New Orleans

New York’s got the ways and means; but just won’t let you be, oh no.”




I don’t know if it is really too close to New Orleans, but I sure as hell know Houston is not anywhere close to winning the AFC South this year.  They finished dead last in that division and only scraped together 2 wins last year. Just because a team is not winning, doesn’t mean there is no fantasy value to be had. New head coach Bill O’Brien, yet another Belichick protégé, is looking to turn a new program around. In all honesty, this Houston challenge should be a piece of cake compared to the Penn State mess the guy walked into a few years ago. After turning the program around in 2012 from the unprecedented Sandusky scandal, O’Brien won Big Ten coach of the year. He was offered NFL jobs, but said at the time: “I am not a one-and-done guy”. The following year, he was done. Evidently, he is a two-and-done sort of fellow. So, now he sets his sights on the mess that is Houston. As far as his offensive impact, he tends towards pocket passing and the running game. I don’t see Ryan Fitzpatrick having the ability, nor the opportunity to be anything except a game manager. He is a smart QB that can go through his reads and will understand the O’Brien’s offense. Fitz has been in the league since 2005. His career touchdown to interception ratio is 106 to 98. Houston’s defense should be decent enough, and number 1 draft pick, Jadeveon Clowney, looks as advertised. You have seen it before, but can you really tire of the mega-hit against Michigan?




Clowney is up to his old tricks and announced his presence in the Atlanta preseason game.




 He and J.J. Watt will be a formidable force and fun to watch. 





With a decent defense, and a guy like Foster running the ball, Fitzpatrick will simply need to feed guys here and there. He has some nice weapons on his receiving core. However, Fitzpatrick has never thrown for 4,000 yards, nor has he passed for 25 touchdowns in a season. When all is said and done, he should be smack in the middle of the 20’s for fantasy ranked quarterbacks.





Arian Foster is going to be a huge part of O’Brien’s offensive scheme. His physical break down, which Pyro called very early last year, was inevitable. In 2010, he carried the rock 327 times. In 2011, he had 278 carries.  In 2012, he racked up 351 totes. It seems obvious now, but if you remember, Pyro was one of the few sites shouting this from the roof tops last year. Yet, the douche canoe sites, who always prefer to play it safe, still ranked Foster in the top ten, if not the top five in 2013. So, his season was put on ice with a major back injury, he played 8 games, only turned in 542 yards on 121 attempts and 1 rushing TD. This is dwarfed by his 2012 numbers were he rushed for 1,424 yards and 15 TDs. But, that does not mean he has fallen off the proverbial running back cliff. This year, Foster should have a bounce back season, although he is not off to a reassuring start. He has yet to play in a preseason tilt as he is recovering from an early camp hamstring injury. Besides concussions, these are some of the trickiest injuries, you just never know how severe it is, or how much it actually hampers performance. On the plus side, Houston has the best strength of schedule for running backs in 2014. This year, it seems we have come full circle. Now, if healthy, he should be able to land inside the top 10 this year for fantasy running backs. Foster is something of a dying breed in the NFL landscape. He is a workhorse back, once a staple, it is now a rarity that a team leans on one back as much as Houston does. Even if his yards per carry continue to dwindle, he will have fantastic fantasy value just for sheer volume of work. Without looking at his first season in 2009 when he only had 54 attempts, his rushing average seems to be sliding. In 2010, he averaged 4.9 yards per carry; in 2011 it was 4.4; in 2012 it was 4.1; finally, last year’s shortened season saw him rush an average of 4.5 yards per attempt.  One thing to remember with Foster is his use in the passing game. In 2010, he hauled in 66 passes for 604 yards and 2 TDs. In 2011, he snagged 53 for 617 and 2 TDs again. The following year, he caught 40 passes for 217 and 2 TDs yet again. In his injured, half season of 2013, he collected 22 passes for 183 yards and 1 TD. Again, this was done in 8 games, so if you double that, then it is pretty consistent with the year before. Looking at his ADP in 12 team leagues, he might just be of value by the time your draft rolls around.  Looking back over the past month, Foster has fallen almost a full round. In mid-July, he was going as the 1st pick in the 2nd round. As of mid to late August, he is the 11th pick in the 2nd round. Look, outside the top one, maybe top two running back tiers, there is risk in one form or another. Pyro is liking Foster more and more. I have to say, if he is there in round 3, it would be hard to pass that up. If you want to hear more about Foster’s rising value, check out the latest podcast where the boys dissect our recent PPR draft, episode 28: show 141. 




If you are looking for a name to handcuff with Foster, get in line. I have heard Ronnie Brown’s name from other sites that I trust. Now that they cut Andre Brown, it is a murky depth chart. Jonathan Grimes has seen the most carries this preseason. In two games, Grimes has a 4.3 yards per carry. Alfred Blue is the only back to score a touchdown. He has averaged the most yards per carry with 4.7. Ronnie Brown has only played in one game. He looked incredibly ineffective, running the ball six times for 3 yards. The remainder of the preseason will be telling, but Pyro is backing Blue in this race. He can fill Foster’s shoes nicely as the dude is virtually a mini-Arian. He is a sleeper pick for Pyro. Personally, I think there is a good chance Foster does not play a full season. If indeed that is the case, Blue could have some nice value later this year. I would take the total production of Foster and Blue on my fantasy team, especially if together, they filled the role of my RB#2.


Moving to the passing game, Andre Johnson is a PPR machine. I am not talking about a half man, a half robot like Robocop.




Andre Johnson just racks up the receptions and yardage year in and year out. He has been playing since 2003 and has gone for at least 100 catches five different times. From 2007 to 2010, he crossed the end zone at least 8 times in every season. But, in the last few years, he seems to have lost some speed and does not score like he once did.  Yardage wise, he is reliable. He has had at least 1,000 yards seven different times in his career, and that does not count his rookie season where he missed that mark by 24 yards. He has put up at least 1,000 yards in each of the last two seasons. He will be 33 this year. Again, you are not drafting him for his scoring potential. Last year, his five TDs came in two consecutive weeks. If you have some boom or bust guys, he is a nice rock steady receiver that can even out your line up. He was given double digit targets in 10 games last year, and saw 9 targets in 2 other games. He went for over 100 yards 6 times in 2013 and that includes his monster 229 yard game. He finished the season as the 12th best WR in standard leagues. As I have stated before, touchdowns are highly unpredictable. When drafting, you want a guy whose fantasy value primarily comes from yardage. Out of the top 20 fantasy receivers last year, Andre Johnson had the highest percentage of fantasy value tied to his receiving yardage; 82.4% of his fantasy points came from his yardage. Marvin Jones, on the other hand was lowest out of that same group. Only 51.7% of his total fantasy value came from his yards. What would you rather bet on: Marvin Jones scoring another 10 touchdowns this year or Andre Johnson going for at least 1,100 yards? By the way, Johnson has done this 7 times in his career. 





If you are hip to the “Touchdown Dependency” philosophy, it is just one of 19 tabs on the Pyro draft kit. That one table alone has complete data for the top 40 QBs, the top 70 running backs, the top 100 wide receivers, and the top 40 tight ends.


Another receiver drawing the fantasy eye is DeAndre Hopkins. He is entering his second year in the NFL. Pyro likes him as a sleeper pick. Personally, I think he is a year away. Curiously, everyone is talking about fellow second year man, Cordarrelle Patterson from the Vikings. Look, I would rather have Patterson. But the gap between these two players is not as wide as 5 whole fantasy round.  Patterson has less of a talent in front of him. Cordarrelle is on the field with Greg Jennings and DeAndre is playing with Andre Johnson. Plus, Patterson is more versatile, and the Vikings offense will put up far more points than Houston. If you were to just look at the receiving numbers from last year, they favor Hopkins. Patterson was targeted 77 times, caught 45 balls for 469 yards receiving. Hopkins was targeted 91 times and caught 52 balls for 802 yards. Going beyond their box scores is where the difference is really noticeable. Patterson has the advantage in overall scoring and multi-dimensional usage. Patterson had 4 receiving touchdowns whereas Hopkins crossed the goal line twice. Patterson also gets some play in the running game. He managed 12 rushing attempts for 158 yards and 3 touchdowns. Patterson also had 2 touchdowns in the return game. This is where you need to know your league. Is it a full point ppr? Do you get individual return yardage and touchdowns or does that fall under special teams? Depending on your response, their value can swing either way. You would think this would be essential knowledge, but if your tiers do not reflect the rules of your league, you are doing yourself a great disservice. Find out your rules, then, take a listen to the podcast episode 22: show 135.





Look, Patterson is going in the 4th round in 12 team leagues as of mid to late-August, whereas Hopkins is going in round 9. Patterson, though overvalued, is going to pop this year. While I like Hopkins, I do not think the conservative Bill O’Brien offense is going to allow Hopkins to flourish, at least not in 2014. Not only that, if you look around the 9th and 10th rounds for wide receivers, there are some nice rookies that I like better : Kelvin Benjamin, Mike Evans, and Jordan Matthews are all going about the same spot as Hopkins. The bottom line is Hopkins is a poor man’s Patterson, but Andre Johnson still has too much value, and the system he is currently in, just will not have enough juice to fill both glasses. I would take Hopkins in a dynasty draft, otherwise, he is on my breakout list for 2015.


Finally, looking at the tight end position, the Texans are starting Garrett Graham. In his 4th season in 2013, Graham scored 6.35 fantasy points per game. Pyro likes him as a deep sleeper. Dawg and Stagg Party are highest on Graham. As of the 2014 draft kit, version #4, both Dawg and Staggs have Graham tiered with guys such as Eric Ebron and Antonio Gates.  Personally, I don’t think the Houston offense has enough fire power to make a huge impact outside their running back and top receiver. There is certainly not enough goo to spill over into the tight end position.



By Mo



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The Texan standard at wide receiver

andre johnson silences his critics

Andre Johnson is the best wide receiver to ever don a Houston Texans uniform, and is one of the all time greats at the position. Johnson is a physically imposing 6’2” and 220 pounds but also possesses sprinter speed. Johnson played on the vaunted Miami Hurricane teams of the early 2000’s that probably had more NFL talent than some NFL squads. Johnson and Ken Dorsey proved to be an effective combo in college as Johnson would catch 89 passes for 1,777 yards and 19 scores in two seasons together. The Pair would also be named Co-MVP’s of the 2002 Rose Bowl game as Johnson caught seven passes for 199 yards and two touchdowns.

While dominating on the football field at Miami, Johnson was also an accomplished sprinter winning the 60 and 100-meter dash for the Big East. Johnson ran his 100 in 10.59 seconds, a very impressive time for someone of his size. At the combine he would run a 4.4 forty and scouts would be drooling to get their hands on a guy that averaged 21 yards a catch his final season. Johnson would end up being drafted third overall after Carson Palmer and Charles Rodgers by the Houston Texans.

Johnson would go on to establish himself as one of the elite pass catchers in the NFL even without ever playing with an elite quarterback in his career. Johnson would go on to set just about every Texans receiving record in his career and establish himself as a top fantasy asset during his time in Houston. Johnson has started every game of his NFL career when healthy, constantly performing at a high level. Johnson is currently second in NFL history in yards per game at 80.4 trailing only Calvin Johnson. Another of Johnson’s accolades is that he is the first receiver in NFL history to catch 60 or more passes in each of his first eight seasons.

Johnson is currently the Texans all time leader in receptions, receiving yards, receiving touchdowns, and most starts. He is also the leader in single season receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns. Andre is currently 17th on the all time receiving yardage list but with a few more productive seasons could find himself behind only Jerry Rice as one of the greatest to ever play the game.



Larry fitz chart


By Stagg Party

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Mario Williams over Reggie Bush and Vince Young

mario williams take #1 overall in 2006 NFL draft

The 2006 NFL draft was one of the best in recent memory and had a number of story lines starting with what the Houston Texans would do with the number one overall pick on draft day. It was believed to be a three way race through the evaluation period between the favorite, Reggie Bush, the hometown hero, Vince Young, and the uber athletic Mario Williams. Each had a unique story coming into the draft, Reggie Bush had just won the Heisman Trophy over teammate Matt Lienart and Texas quarterback Vince Young who had just beaten USC in the National Championship game with his play. Vince Young had just completed one of the greatest college seasons ever and was a Texas hero after leading the Longhorns to a National Championship. Mario Williams was an athletic freak at 6’7” 290 pounds and ran a 4.7 forty-yard dash at the combine.

The 2005 incarnation of the Houston Texans finished 2-14, which was the worst record in franchise history, so they had holes all over the field. The team would also have newly hired Gary Kubiak in charge for the 2006 season so no change would be a surprise. Many draft analysts pegged the Texans to select Reggie Bush as the franchise’s leading rusher Domanick Davis suffered a knee injury in the 2005 season and was expected to miss some time. The team also was not sold on David Carr as he had been one of the most abused quarterbacks in the league and had a .291 career winning percentage. The Texans would spurn all analysts and select Mario Williams first overall, signing him to a contract the night before the draft. Reggie Bush would be selected second overall by the New Orleans Saints and Vince Young would be selected third overall by the Tennessee Titans.

The 2006 was an absolutely loaded draft as 18 of the 32 players selected in the first round would go on to make at least one Pro Bowl.  Mario Williams, Vince Young, and Reggie Bush would all make at least one Pro Bowl in their careers. Mario Williams would leave the Texans after the expiration of his six-year rookie contract for the Buffalo Bills. Upon leaving Williams was the franchise leader in sacks with 53 and forced fumbles with 11. Selecting Williams was one of the most talked about decisions of the 2006 NFL Draft but the case can be made that it paid off.

By Stagg Party

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Touchdown Polk

LeSean McCoy has stated that Chris Polk will take over goal line duties. The Eagles have relied on Polk lately down low, and he has delivered. McCoy seasons has been up and down, he has over 1200 yards rushing, but with the size and power of Chris Polk he is more of a logical choice.

“Some of the short-yardage stuff, Polk’s obviously a little bit more powerful back, so they’ve been giving him some of the runs in short-yardage in a couple games, especially last game,” McCoy said.

“He’s not getting all of them, but if it helps the team, that’s what I’m going to do.

“There’s just some plays on 3rd-and-1 type of situations where I probably wouldn’t have gotten it, where I see him kind of hit a guy, drag a guy and get in there. It’s hard to be selfish with a player like Polk to use him to do those type of things.”

Pyro's take: This is great news for standard league owners, with the Eagles offense, Polk will get his chances to score. He is definitely worth a look on the waiver wire.

12/18/14, 11:17 AM CST by Vaaal-verde

Torn Pectoral

Ryan Mallet has a torn Pectoral muscle, and the injury will put him out for the season. According to Houston Texans beat reporter John McClain "Just left Texans dressing room and I'm told Mallett is out for rest of season."

Pyro's take: His audition is over, and will be a free-agent coming this summer. I dont see the Texans turning to rookie prospect Tom Savage until they are officially out of the playoffs. Which leaves Ryan Fitzpatrick as most likely starter.

11/24/14, 01:06 PM CST by Vaaal-verde

Groin Day-to-Day

Drew Dougherty has reported that Arian Foster "O'Brien: Arian Foster (groin injury) is "day-to-day"

Pyro's take: Arian Foster at this time looks like a no-go this Sunday. If you have Alfred Blue make sure you get him ready.

11/20/14, 12:04 AM CST by Vaaal-verde

Practices but Out?

Tania Ganguli ESPN writer for the Houston Texans, has stated via twitter "O'Brien says Arian Foster practiced a little bit today. Says that'll be a gameday decision."

Pyro's take: Multiple reports surfaced Friday that Foster will be out against Cleveland, giving Alfred Blue the start. "Right now it does not look promising," Adam Schefter said of Foster's potential availability. "Signs not encouraging." Schefter expects a "heavy dose" of Alfred Blue against the Browns.

This is confusing as it gets, but I gotta trust what reports are saying, and that he is out, and this really is not a game time decision. But in safety make sure he is out for certain.

11/14/14, 02:41 PM CST by Vaaal-verde

Blue Starting?

Alfred Blue will most likely start due to Arian Foster probably not playing. Dale Robertson, head writer for the Houston Chronicle mentioned via twitter "It is doubtful that Arian Foster will play although he will be listed as questionable."

Pyro's take: Blue has generally underwhelmed as a rookie, looking more like Shonn Greene, than Arian Foster. Alfred Blue will get the full-time load, and against a bad Cleveland Browns defense, makes him a flex option or bye-week replacement.

11/14/14, 02:24 PM CST by Vaaal-verde

Game Time

It appears that Arian Foster will be a game time decision according to Texans tv host Drew Daugherty "O'Brien: Arian Foster is definitely a game-time decision, and we'll work him out before the game."

Pyro's take: Keep a hold on to Foster and make sure he plays before officially putting him in your lineup, if he cannot go, expect Alfred Blue to step up in his place.

11/13/14, 04:22 PM CST by Vaaal-verde

Won't Miss Time?

Arian Foster looks as though he won't miss anytime. The Texans have their bye-week and Ian Rapoport stated that "unlikely to miss any time with the groin injury he suffered Sunday against the Eagles because of the team's extended break, per a source informed of his injury." Also, Foster "bypassed additional medical testing and simply needs rest above anything else. The Texans don't play the Browns for another 13 days, which should help Foster get back on the field."

Pyro's take: This would save the Texans a huge misfortune if Foster can go in two weeks. Alfred Blue looks to be a good candidate as a rookie, but he is untested, and with the balance of playoffs up for grabs, Houston does not want to rely on a rookie to get the job done.

11/05/14, 06:36 PM CST by Vaaal-verde

Now Starting

Ryan Mallet will now be starting for the Houston Texans according to head coach Bill O'Brien. “This might be the thing that helps our team,” O’Brien said at NRG Stadium. “I might be wrong.”

Pyro's take: With Houston floating in the grey area on making the playoffs at 4-5, this is a risky move, and honestly, I dont know what Mallet can bring to the table that Fitzpartrick hasn't, or doesn't.

Keep your eye out as this may be something or nothing.

11/05/14, 11:35 AM CST by Vaaal-verde


Brian Hoyer tossed his worst game as a pro last week, but Mike Pettine has announced that Hoyer will remain the starter. "Brian is still firmly our starter," said Pettine, still admittedly feeling the sting of Sunday's 24-6 loss to the previously winless Jaguars. "Nothing's changed. Each week we make the decision as to if we want to include Johnny in the plan."

Pettine went on to say, that each week the coaching staff talk about if they want to use Johnny Manziel in the offense "Each week when the offensive staff gets together -- and I'll jump in with them too -- is that they put the plan together, and it's what gives us the best chance to win,'' said Pettine. "So if the situation this week maybe calls for him to play some then that will be the case. But we're not going to hit the panic button after one loss. While we know that the quarterback position needed to be more productive, it was more symptomatic of the entire offense.''

Pyro's take: Hoyer had a horrible game, but a Manziel is a horrible quarterback, so you go with the hand that wins you ball games. As long as the Browns are in reach of a playoff spot, Hoyer will most likely be the quarterback. He will be on a shorter leash this week, so a quick start is recommended.

10/20/14, 10:28 PM CDT by Vaaal-verde

Arian Brotherhood

Arian Foster and the Houston Texans had a great game, as the offense line blocked well for him, and Foster used that for his big run-day. It was a combination of Andre Johnson, JJ Watt, and Arian Foster that helped the Texans escape a 23-0 first quarter deficit and lose by less than seven points.

Pyro's take: On the game Foster carried the ball for 20 times for 109 yards and scored twice, and caught 3 passes for 32 yards, and danced his way through large gaping holes for him to cut-through and eventually make it into the end zone. Even though Alfred Blue got some carries, it wasn't enough, but to give Foster some breathing treatments.

Foster should continue to be a high number two. or even a low number one.

10/10/14, 12:43 AM CDT by Vaaal-verde

Road Tested

The Cleveland Browns only have won one road game in each of the past three seasons, and now coming off a bye-week they will be traveling to Tennessee, and this could be a break-out game for Hoyer and the Browns. "I think the quarterback's demeanor and how he handles adversity is important,'' said coach Mike Pettine. "I think it's helpful (for him to remain poised) just because he's much more likely to get rattled on the road, whether it's dealing with crowd noise or just kind of that swell of emotion, that energy that's coming down on you from the stands."

Jordan Cameron went on to say about Brian Hoyer: "He's our leader,'' said Cameron. "He's the one that's vocal in the huddle. He's vocal in the locker room, and he really is adamant about the little things and playing well. It's just good to have. You need someone on offense that's going to speak their mind and put guys in their place, whether they need it or not. It's kind of the guy in the huddle like, 'We've got this.'"

Pyro's take: Brian Hoyer has a good chance to make a case to remain the starting quarterback, especially with a solid effort against the Titans. He has been extended this opportunity by the coaches, as they could have made the switch during the bye weeks, but Hoyer has earned their respect. How long that will remain is the question.

Hoyer went 1-2 in the first three games, but completed 64.2 percent of his passes with a solid 7.53 YPA and 3:0 TD-to-INT ratio. Hoyer can develop an even stronger hold on the starting posistion as the Browns face Tennessee this week, then, Pittsburgh, Jacksonville, Oakland and Tampa Bay. If he can get through that strand, he might just hold off Johnny Manziel.

10/04/14, 02:12 AM CDT by Vaaal-verde


Arian Foster's hamstring is still being an issue for him. “As soon as I feel 100 percent, I’ll be out there,” said Foster, who sat out the 30-17 loss to the Giants after having back-to-back 100-plus-yard games to open the season. “It’s my hamstring’s call.” Foster carried a combined 55 times for 241 yards in victories over Washington and Oakland.

Pyro's take: If Arian Foster cannot go, Alfred Blue will be the starter once again. Blue had a nice day against the Giants, but the Bills defense is much better.

09/23/14, 12:50 PM CDT by Vaaal-verde

Hurry-up and go

The Cleveland Browns found a system that may just work for them. The no-huddle, hurry-up offense seemed to work great, as they battled back to make a contest against the Steelers. Brian Hoyer proved to be the change of pace the Browns needed to rally from a 24-point halftime deficit and tie the score early in the fourth quarter. “It’s something I’m very comfortable with,” Hoyer said Monday. “I think for our whole entire offense, we’re all comfortable with it. We practice it a lot. To go out and execute it in a game boosts your confidence level.”

Pyro's take: In the second half, the Browns scored all three of their touchdowns and gained 288 of their 389 yards and 20 of their 23 first downs.

Hoyer completed 15-of-20 passes for 173 yards, a touchdown and a rating of 117.3 after halftime. Through the first two quarters, he was 4-of-11 passing for 57 yards with a rating of 54.

Brian Hoyer did mention that even though its a great system to use, it can't be used for four quarters, 16 games a season. The system is made to work in spurts and not a constant game-plan, so they will need to work their regular offense plan to be successful.

09/09/14, 02:42 PM CDT by Vaaal-verde

Grimes number 2

According to R.J. White via, Johnathan Grimes is primed to be the number two behind Arian Foster. Grimes finished the preseason with 42 yards on nine carries and catching three passes for 25 yards. Displaying the skills to be a three-down back just like Foster. "He broke off a 22-yard run in the second quarter that was Foster-esque for his balance and cutback ability."

Alfred Blue was also competing against Grimes, but came up just short, as the Texans released their depth chart showing Grimes as the winner.

Pyro's take: Arian Foster in his five seasons has played in only played in 59 games. This leaves plenty of opportunity for Grimes to be on your fantasy radar, and is the man you want if you own Foster.

09/01/14, 03:26 PM CDT by Vaaal-verde

Mallet traded to Texans

The New England Patriots traded Ryan Mallet (6-foot-6, and weighs 240-pounds, Mallett, 26, was the No. 74 overall pick of the 2011 draft) to the Texans in exchange for a 2016 conditional seventh-round pick in return. The pick could change to a sixth-round selection if Mallett receives a certain number of snap counts. Ryan Fitzpatrick is the starter there, so unless an injury occurs that scenario is unlikely.

Case Keenum was released after the acquisition. Mallet was taken in the third-round of the 2011 draft by the Patriots.

Jimmy Garoppolo, who the Patriots drafted this year (second round, No. 62 overall) and was successful this preseason made Mallett expendable.

Pyro's take: Ryan Mallet will get a better opportunity as a Texan. He was just not going to see anytime backing-up the ageless Tom Brady. The trade clears room for the Patriots, and give Garoppolo time to develop, while allowing Mallet to battle for the number two spot behind Ryan Fitzpatrick.

Ryan Fitzpatrick will probably be only a one year fix for the Texans, and next year Mallet can challenge Tom Savage for a starting role.

Mallet should only be considered for keeper or dynasty leagues, but could make a nice free-agency selection if something should happen to Fitzpatrick.

08/31/14, 03:17 PM CDT by Vaaal-verde

Hoyer Named Starter Over Manziel

"Despite poor performances by both quarterbacks Monday night in Washington, Brian Hoyer has been named the Cleveland Browns' starting quarterback over Johnny Manziel for the opener in Pittsburgh.

Coach Mike Pettine made the decision in a lengthy meeting with offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan and quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains Tuesday night and announced it Wednesday morning.

Pettine admitted Tuesday night that Manziel's obscene gesture to the Redskins' bench Monday night and all of the other things he's done since the spring would factor into the decision. Clearly, Manziel didn't show the leadership ability needed to be the starting quarterback yet."

Pyro's take: Anyone who watched Monday night should have seen this coming. For all the hype that is Manziel, it looks like its all fizzle for fantasy purposes this season. His scrambles were wildly unsuccessful and he went 7 of 16 for 65 yards over the air. But this doesn't make Hoyer anymore tantalizing as a QB as the Manziel media circus will always lead to headaches for Hoyer's fantasy owners if his job is on the line. With no proven threats at the wide receiver position, the bottom line is don't draft either of these guys.

08/20/14, 07:29 PM CDT by SUITS

Blue moon on the rise

With the release of Andre Brown, Andre Blue stock is on the rise. The Texans dont have much depth in the back-field, as Arian Foster is the primary, while Blue and Johnathan Grimes will be back-ups. Houston also has worked out journeymen Brian Leonard, Ronnie Brown, and William Powell. Look for the Texans to address the depth issue quickly.

Pyro's take: Alfred Blue is a rookie out of LSU, who was drafted by the Texans in the sixth round. Despite making just seven collegiate starts, he finished his LSU career with 209-1,253-11 (6.0) rushing and 16-105-0 (6.6) receiving. He is a beast standing 6'2 and weighing 223 pounds. Nice vision, instincts and patience. Will run over defenders, and seems to have nice hands out of the backfield. Would have been drafted higher if he had not shown the propensity of getting injured.

In week one against the Cardinals, he rushed for 30 yards on five carries, and caught 2 passes for 14 yards.

Update: Texans sign Ronnie Brown and William Powell. Brown has rushed for 5,328 yards and 38 touchdowns. Powell spent the 2011-12 season in Arizona as a reserve.

08/11/14, 07:40 PM CDT by Vaaal-verde

Strained hammy

Arian Foster was on the sidelines during yesterday's practice dealing with a strained hamstring. "He’s doing OK," coach Bill O’Brien said. "It’s kind of a day-to-day thing. It’s nothing serious. I would assume - (but) guess you can’t assume anything - he’d be back pretty soon."

Arian Foster is a three-down back, that is capable of being the top running back in football. In 2010 he had over 2,000 combined yards, and had rushed for over 1,200 in three straight years, prior to last season's injury. Also, in 2010 he averaged over 100 yards rushing per game, and scored 15 touchdowns. In his 59 games played he has 5,063 yards rushing with 45 touchdowns. His reception total is worldly as well, as he has 189 receptions for 1,714 yards and seven touchdowns.

Pyro's take: Arian Foster has been promised a full-time back role in this offense, but he obviously needs to stay healthy. This will be a make or break year for him, at this point keep him where you have him in your rankings and tiers, as he should be a low #1, or high number #2 back for your fantasy squad.

08/02/14, 04:17 PM CDT by Vaaal-verde

Hoyer in dead heat with Johnny Football

According to Browns offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, Manziel has yet to surpass Brian Hoyer as the favorite to start. The AP writes:

“Shanahan said there is no clear leader between Hoyer and Manziel. Shanahan is hoping one of the QBs takes off and makes the decision easier for Cleveland’s coaching staff.”

As for Hoyer, he seems to have nothing but great things to say about his young and popular rival. He told Sports Illustrated:

“All I can say about the kid is when he’s in the building, he does everything the right way. He’s in meetings, he’s asking questions, he’s working hard. I got asked the other day about his offseason. I don’t know anything about that. I have no idea. But there are no rules about what you can and can’t do when you’re away from the building. He’s definitely a talented kid and he is who he is, a guy who won the Heisman Trophy.”

Pyro's take: The ceiling is definitely higher on Manziel, but Hoyer is the more polished quarterback at this point. That does not mean he is going to win the job. As Shanahan said, it is going to come down to the preseason games. If Johnny Football can show flashes, while not turning the ball over, the job will be his. If he is inconsistent, then Hoyer will start the season.

08/01/14, 09:29 PM CDT by Houdini

Shorts to Miss a Few Weeks

Cecil Shorts, the team's No. 1 pass-catcher, will miss multiple weeks of camp, coach Gus Bradley said Saturday, per the team's official website. Shorts missed time in OTAs with a calf injury and pulled a hamstring on Friday.

Bradley wasn't worried about Shorts' readiness for the season, but it's a discouraging start to camp. The injury helps to highlight the lack of experience at the position for the Jaguars.

Pyro's take: Shorts is just another injury to the Jaguars pass catchers that is already missing Ace Sanders and Justin Blackmon to suspensions. Rookie Wide Receiver Marquise Lee also missed all of OTA's with an ankle injury. Cecil should retain his spot as the number one receiver in the pecking order as he has the longest history with Chad Henne, but this injury gives rookies Marquise Lee and Allen Robinson a chance to develop chemistry with Henne working with the first team.

While the injury may seem insignificant now, just remember that hamstring injuries tend to linger, just ask Miles Austin. I just moved Marquise Lee ahead of Cecil on my tiers as someone will have to catch passes in Jacksonville, and coaches have been talking about moving the rookie around the formation and letting him work out of the slot. Shorts and Lee could be in a dogfight for the top receiver on the Jaguars come season end but my money is on the Biletnikoff Award winner.

07/26/14, 02:25 PM CDT by Stagg Party


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