Guess the 53: Take 1

June, 27, 2014
Jun 27
12:00
PM ET
Here's a far-too-early breakdown of what the Texans 53-man roster might look like based on what I've seen so far.

Quarterbacks Ryan Fitzpatrick, Case Keenum, Tom Savage: Some teams keep two quarterbacks and others keep three. The Texans kept three last season because Keenum forced his way onto the roster, but kept two prior to that with Keenum on the practice squad. Because Savage is at a developmental stage, it's smart to keep an extra guy so you're not forced to play a rookie or start scrambling in case of injury.

Running backs/fullbacks Arian Foster, Alfred Blue, Andre Brown, Jay Prosch: Blue and Prosch aren't guaranteed spots on the roster just because they were drafted, but I think they'll get them.

Receivers Andre Johnson, DeAndre Hopkins, Mike Thomas, Alan Bonner, DeVier Posey/Keshawn Martin: Yes, I have copped out here. But this is too tough right now and I refuse to do it. You can't make me. I do think Posey and Martin will be fighting for that final spot unless the Texans opt to keep six receivers. Johnson will be back, and Thomas has really impressed coaches.

[+] EnlargeHouston's Andre Johnson
AP Photo/David J. PhillipExpect Andre Johnson to be back in the fold for the Texans despite his current holdout.
Tight ends Garrett Graham, Ryan Griffin, C.J. Fiedorowicz, Zach Potter: Four might seem high for the number of tight ends, but I think this will be an important position for the Texans this season. Fiedorowicz, the third-round draft pick, will give them the kind of powerful blocking presence they didn't have before. Anthony Denham could be a practice squad candidate, as he hasn't played tight end very long.

Offensive linemen Duane Brown, Brandon Brooks, Ben Jones, Chris Myers, Xavier Su'a-Filo, Derek Newton, Will Yeatman, Brennan Williams, Cody White: This is not a tough group to choose. Su'a-Filo has missed organized team activities and the Texans' voluntary minicamp because NFL rules don't allow rookies to join their team for voluntary activities until their school's graduation passes. As the first pick of the second round, he could be a starter right away as long as he can catch up on the offense during training camp.

Defensive linemen J.J. Watt, Jared Crick, Louis Nix III, Jerrell Powe, Jeoffrey Pagan/Tim Jamison: With Pagan, a sixth-round pick, having been sidelined due to injury it's been hard to tell what he can give the Texans. Jamison has some history with the team and has a decent shot of remaining on it.

Linebackers Brian Cushing, Justin Tuggle, Max Bullough, Akeem Dent, Brooks Reed, Whitney Mercilus, Jadeveon Clowney, Ricky Sapp, Jeff Tarpinian: Bullough, an inside linebacker, could be an undrafted free agent who makes the team. The Texans have been searching for a way to deepen this position for a couple of years now. Tuggle and Reed both offer the flexibility of playing inside and outside linebacker.

Cornerbacks Johnathan Joseph, Kareem Jackson, A.J. Bouye, Elbert Mack, Brandon Harris, Andre Hal: Harris has perhaps not caught on the way you'd hope from a second-round pick, but I don't think he's off the roster. Bouye and Mack have drawn praise from head coach Bill O'Brien. Hal is tentatively on this list. The seventh-round draft pick could also be a guy they figure out how to stash on injured reserve to give him some time to develop.

Safeties D.J. Swearinger, Kendrick Lewis, Chris Clemons, Lonnie Ballentine, Eddie Pleasant: O'Brien said Lewis didn't have a leg up on the rest of the safeties because he's played for Romeo Crennel before. But that familiarity has got to help him. Pleasant is a good special teams player and has improved since he came to the Texans as an undrafted rookie two years ago.

Specialists punter Shane Lechler, long snapper Jon Weeks, kicker undecided: We'll get a better idea of the kicking competition between rookie Chris Boswell and incumbent Randy Bullock when they start kicking during preseason games.

Tania Ganguli

ESPN Houston Texans reporter

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