3 Texans Players in Danger of Losing Their Starting Jobs in the 2020 NFL Season
The Houston Texans have had an eventful offseason. From trading away DeAndre Hopkins to Bill O'Brien getting caught yelling during the virtual NFL Draft, there hasn't been a dull moment in Houston. It's a make-or-break season for the Texans in general, from players to the coaching staff. With the big moves they made, positive results are vital.
With this much pressure, there will be a lot of competition for starting jobs. With that in mind, here are three Texans in danger of losing their starting jobs during the 2020 season.
1. David Johnson, RB
The player with the most pressure to perform may be newcomer David Johnson, since he was the biggest star acquired in the return from the Hopkins trade. Simply put, Johnson will not last the entire season if he plays at the level he did in 2019. He struggled before losing his job due to injury, averaging a measly 3.9 yards per carry over the first six games of the season. While Arizona's below-average offensive line was often blamed for his struggles, Kenyan Drake managed to averaged 5.2 yards per carry after taking over as the starter in Week 9. Carlos Hyde, meanwhile, averaged 4.4 yards per carry in Houston last season – a feat Johnson hasn't managed since 2015. If Johnson doesn't step up his play, don't be shocked to see O'Brien explore some alternatives at running back.
2. Brandin Cooks, WR
Acquiring Brandin Cooks was the other big trade the Texans made this offseason. Cooks most recently struggled with the Los Angeles Rams, serving as the deep threat on a middling passing attack. He also suffered two concussions last season, which is concerning given his history. Hopefully this doesn't affect him going forward, but he's had five concussions at the NFL level, which is worrying, to say the least. Cooks is too talented to lose his job due to on-field play, but if he suffers another concussion it's fair to wonder about his future going forward.
3. Vernon Hargreaves III, CB
Vernon Hargreaves III was cut by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers midseason. He was then picked up by Houston and even made two starts. He'll likely be competing for a starting job this offseason, though he certainly didn't perform well last year. On the 33 targets he saw in coverage with the Texans, Hargreaves allowed a 69.7 completion percentage and a 124.6 passer rating. For context, that would've been the league's fourth-best completion percentage and the league's best passer rating among qualified QBs. He'll have to turn it around if he wants to be the team's full-time starter.
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