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Sunday, June 1, 2014

Team Talk: Houston Texans

By Adam Filadelfo (@Frostt24)

It's time to head over to the AFC South and take a look at the most disappointing team in the NFL in 2013. And for fantasy owners, the Houston Texans weren't much better. Too many injuries and too little production caused the Texans to go from fantasy darlings in 2012, to fantasy nightmare in 2013. With key fantasy players returning this season, the Texans will hopefully get back in the good graces of fantasy owners. (Because pleasing us fantasy owners is all that matter)

Ryan Fitzpatrick- With the Titans last season, Fitzpatrick was asked to assume weekly duties when Jake Locker went down with an injury. Fitzpatrick held his own and even found his way onto fantasy rosters for quarterback needy teams. In 11 games last season, Fitzpatrick managed to produce 219 fantasy points averaging just under 20 fantasy points per week. As of now, Fitzpatrick is projected to be the Texans starting quarterback heading into the 2014 season.

Case Keenum- Case Keenum looked great early on and fantasy owners were quick to add him to their rosters. As fast as Keenum started off is as quickly as he fell apart. Playing in eight games in 2013, Keenum did pass for over 1,700 yards and nine touchdowns but became too inconsistent for fantasy owners to warrant putting into their lineups each week. Keenum eventual lost the starting job and the trust of fantasy owners.

Arian Foster- With all the work Foster has been given over the last several seasons, it should come as no surprise that his body finally broke down in 2013. Foster saw just eight games last season and managed 542 rushing yards and a touchdown while adding 22 catches for 183 yards and another touchdown. Before Foster went down for the season, he averaged over ten fantasy points per game for his owners. If healthy this season, Foster should be back to his top running back self.

Andre Brown- Adding Andre Brown through free agency, the Texans replaced the departed Ben Tate. Andre Brown has quite the injury history himself and Arian Foster has quite the mileage on him but a healthy Andre Brown can produce for fantasy owners. He was banged up for half the season for the Giants in 2013 but in the eight games he did play, Brown averaged just under 10 fantasy points per game by rushing for almost 500 yards and three scores  while catching 20 passes for another 103 yards.

Dennis Johnson
- Dennis Johnson was more or less the last back standing in Houston in 2013 and he used that opportunity to show fantasy owners he is worth a late round pick in 2014. While his numbers were not eye popping by any means, Foster and Brown have showed they cannot stay healthy for an entire season and with Johnson's 183 rushing yards and eight receptions for another 46 yards, he can be a part of the passing game and add a little depth to a fantasy roster should Foster or Brown go down with injuries.

Garrett Graham
- Expected to be the starting tight end for the Texans with the departure of Owen Daniels, Graham had a nice little stretch last season where he produced for fantasy owners and finished the season with 49 catches for 545 yards and five touchdowns. He did only manage seven fantasy points per contest which isn't exactly fantasy worthy but with more consistent playing time, could increase those numbers in 2014. The quarterback situation could be a little dire though and that could obviously hurt his value.

DeAndre Hopkins- 93 targets for a rookie isn't that bad. It shows some confidence in throwing his way. That's what DeAndre Hopkins had in 2013 despite the revolving door that was the Texans quarterback. The rookie managed to haul in 52 of those targets for over 800 yards and two scores. If Hopkins gets consistent quarterback play in 2014, he could be poised for a big fantasy season.

Andre Johnson- 2013 saw another stellar fantasy season for one of the top wideouts in fantasy football. 181 targets and 109 receptions for over 1,400 yards and five touchdowns was what Andre Johnson gave his fantasy owners in 2013. He played in all 16 games and rewarded his owners with double digit fantasy points in almost half of those games. With numbers like those, imagine what Andre Johnson would've done with consistent quarterback play.

D/ST- One wouldn't know it from looking at their record or the statistics, but the Texans had a good defense for fantasy purposes. It was their offense that put the defense in bad situations with what seemed like a pick six every week. 2014 should see the Houston defense tops in fantasy again especially with the addition of defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel and stud defensive end Jadeveon Clowney from South Carolina. With Clowney playing next to JJ Watt and if Brian Cushing can manage to play an entire season without getting hurt, the Texans defense should once again endear themselves to fantasy owners and be a top fantasy defense once again.