The Houston Texans are getting a fresh start with a new head coach and a new quarterback. But could the new unit, one that has been incredibly busy throughout the offseason, surprise the world and be one of the NFL teams to go from worst to first in their division in just a single offseason?
Everything You Need Ahead of the Houston Texans’ 2023 NFL Season
The Texans’ organization made wholesale changes from a season ago. There isn’t much resemblance from the 2022 unit throughout the roster or coaching staff. But have they done enough? Much of that will come down to how well Houston can get their rookie QB to play and how much their new offensive coordinator has sponged off of Kyle Shanahan.
Houston Texans Roster Changes
- Players Signed
- WR Robert Woods
- S Jimmie Ward
- DT Sheldon Rankins
- TE Dalton Schultz
- FB Andrew Beck
- QB Case Keenum
- CB Shaquill Griffin
- DT Hassan Ridgeway
- RB Mike Boone
- RB Devin Singletary
- LB Denzel Perryman
- WR Noah Brown
- LB Jake Martin
- LB Cory Littleton
- CB Tavierre Thomas
- EDGE Chase Winovich
- WR Steven Sims Jr.
- G Michael Deiter
- T Greg Little
- LB Neville Hewitt
- CB Darius Phillips
- EDGE Derek Rivers
- DT Byron Cowart
- EDGE Jacob Martin
The Texans weren’t shy during the free agent period. Sniping Ward from finishing his career as a 49er was an incredible get for DeMeco Ryans. Ward will be able to skirt the issues surrounding how teams and players are able to communicate during the offseason.
Ward can help the young members of the Houston secondary with Ryans’ coverages in their spare time. Rankins and Perryman bring reinforcements to what was an underwhelming defensive interior a season ago.
Robert Woods may be over the hill at this point in his career, but there’s a solid chance that Schultz can become the rookie QB’s best friend.
- Players Traded
- WR Brandin Cooks
Cooks was easily the best player on the Texans’ offense, but he was being paid a significant amount of money and very clearly did not want to be in Houston anymore.
- Players Lost
- EDGE Ogbonnia Okoronkwo
- QB Jeff Driskel
- QB Kyle Allen
- G Justin McCray
- TE Jordan Akins
- CB Tremon Smith
- LB Jalen Reeves-Maybin
- S Jonathan Owens
- TE O.J. Howard
- WR Phillip Dorsett
- WR Chris Moore
- Expired Contracts
- C Justin Britt
- G A.J. Cann
- EDGE Mario Addison
- LB Kevin Pierre-Louis
- RB Rex Burkhead
- DT Taylor Stallworth
- RB Royce Freeman
- LB Blake Cashman
- WR Drew Estrada
- Players Cut/Waived
- TE Eric Tomlinson
- LB Jermaine Carter
- S Joe Doyle
- QB E.J. Perry
- Players Drafted
- QB C.J. Stroud
- EDGE Will Anderson Jr.
- C Jake Scruggs
- WR Nathaniel Dell
- EDGE Dylan Horton
- LB Henro To’oTo’o
- C Jarrett Patterson
- WR Xavier Hutchinson
- S Brandon Hill
- S Darius Joiner
Only the Indianapolis Colts in 1992 have ever selected two players — defensive lineman Steve Emtman and linebacker Quentin Coryatt — in a single draft higher than Stroud and Anderson. Hopefully, things go better for Houston than for Indianapolis. Those two combined for zero Pro Bowls.
Houston Texans Coaching Staff in 2023
- Head Coach: DeMeco Ryans
- Chief of Staff: Nick Kray
- Assistant to the Coaches: Jake Olson
- Offensive Coordinator: Bobby Slowik
- Senior Offensive Assistant: Bill Lazor
- Running Backs: Danny Barrett
- Senior Offensive Assistant: Shane Day
- Offensive Assistant: Jarrod James
- Quarterbacks: Jerrod Johnson
- Wide Receivers/Passing Game Coordinator: Ben McDaniels
- Offensive Assistant: DeNarius McGhee
- Tight Ends: Jake Moreland
- Offensive Line: Chris Strausser
- Defensive Coordinator: Matt Burke
- Safeties: Stephen Adegoke
- Defensive Assistant: Ben Bolling
- Defensive Line: Jacques Cesaire
- Linebackers: Chris Kiffin
- Defensive Passing Game Coordinator: Cory Undlin
- Cornerbacks: Dino Vasso
- Special Teams Coordinator: Frank Ross
- Assistant Special Teams: Sean Baker
Predicting the Houston Texans Depth Chart
- QB: C.J. Stroud, Davis Mills, Case Keenum
- RB: Dameon Pierce, Devin Singletary, Mike Boone, Andrew Beck (FB)
- WR: Robert Woods, Nico Collins, John Metchie III, Tank Dell, Noah Brown, Xavier Hutchinson, Amari Rodgers
- TE: Dalton Schultz, Teagan Quitoriano, Brevin Jordan
- LT: Laremy Tunsil, Greg Little
- LG: Kenyon Green
- C: Juice Scruggs, Scott Quessenberry
- RG: Shaq Mason, Michael Deiter
- RT: Tytus Howard, Charlie Heck
- DE: Will Anderson Jr., Jonathan Greenard, Jerry Hughes, Jacob Martin, Chase Winovich, Dylan Horton
- DT: Sheldon Rankins, Maliek Collins, Roy Lopez, Hassan Ridgeway
- LB: Denzel Perryman, Christian Harris, Cory Littleton, Henry To’oTo’o, Blake Cashman
- CB: Derek Stingley Jr., Desmond King II, Shaquill Griffin, Steven Nelson, Tavierre Thomas
- S: Jalen Pitre, Jimmie Ward, M.J. Stewart, Eric Murray, Grayland Arnold
2022 Results and Standings
The Texans won just three games in 2022. The two seasons prior, they won four games in each. To make matters worse, in those three seasons, they had four different head coaches.
Houston hasn’t been good since 2019. Before that, from 2015-2019, they won the division four times. But they spent the better part of their first decade in the league as one would expect an expansion franchise to look.
And despite winning just 11 games over the past three seasons, they’ve only finished last in their division once.
2023 Power Ranking and Season Outlook
Houston plays in an underwhelming division. The Jacksonville Jaguars appear to be the runaway for the crown after a historic comeback a season ago, but could the Texans take advantage of their underwhelming division?
A lot can change between now and January, but PFN NFL Analyst Dallas Robinson doesn’t think so.
“The Texans probably have too many holes for them to take a step forward into playoff contention. If DeMeco Ryans can get the most out of Anderson, Derek Stingley Jr., Jalen Pitre, and the rest of Houston’s young defensive core, the Texans might surprise some people. But unless Stroud hits the ground running from Day 1, the club’s offense will likely hold them back.”
There is definitely a good chance that the offense holds Houston back. However, they’ve made significant changes to the roster, and Ryans has proven to be an outstanding teacher on the defensive side of the ball.
Additionally, Slowik has extensive experience working with rookie quarterbacks. This will be the third consecutive season he’s worked with a rookie, starting with Trey Lance in 2021 and Brock Purdy a season ago.
“I have a lot of connections and people that I’m friends with that I know across the NFL that have been through this process, and I’m also fortunate that I went through it really the last two years with Trey and with Brock in a different way.
“And just getting like the different ways and the different styles guys play, guys learn, they put things together, and the process they have to go through to get to where you envision them getting to and the patience that’s required when you do that, while at the same time like the urgency that’s required when you do that.”
If Slowik can get the most out of Stroud as a rookie behind a decent offensive line, even Houston’s underwhelming receiving corps may produce enough for them to win more games than expected.