With the 2012 NFL Regular Season just over a month away from kicking into full swing, the excitement seems to be elevating with each passing day. For fans of the Houston Texans, optimism is at an all-time high, with the team now becoming a rather popular pick among pundits to make its first-ever trip to the big stage in New Orleans for Super Bowl XLVII.
However, injuries prevented Houston from reaching its full potential last season and appears to already be putting a damper on its high hopes heading into 2012. Star receiver Andre Johnson suffered a slight groin injury on Sunday, and albeit he should be back next week, the team is now holding its breath after another key piece to the puzzle went down on Wednesday.
Duane Brown, a former first-round selection (26th overall) by the Texans in 2008 and the team’s star left tackle injured his left ankle during a running play on Wednesday. The 6-4, 320-pound tackle was able to walk off the field on his own power. However, he left the field a short time later via cart to get an MRI.
“He got rolled up, kind of got hit on the outside of his leg,” Kubiak said, via the team’s website. “It’s part of football, unfortunately. We’ll hold our breath. Hopefully, he’s OK.”
In four seasons, Brown, 26, has only missed four starts and comes off the best year of his career, where he allowed just 2.5 sacks and landed on the Associated Press’ second All-Pro team. In addition, the Texans are also holding a competition on the opposite side of the line for the right tackle job with the departure of Eric Winston.
With the Colts starting over from scratch, the Jaguars off to a shaky start and many questions for the Titans (though plenty of pieces in place as well), it’s safe to say the Texans are the clear favorite to win the division heading into the season. Nonetheless, nothing’s a given in this league and the team’s crossing its fingers for a speedy recovery for its starting left tackle.
Verse of This Piece: “Doing right brings freedom to honest people, but those who are not trustworthy will be caught in their own desires.” —Proverbs 11:6