Texans Improving TE Depth, Signed Fourth Round Pick Graham

On July 28, the Texans came to terms with their fourth round pick tight end Garrett Graham.  John Godwin of the Houston Chronicle reported that Graham signed a four year $2.59 million contract with  an $800,100 signing bonus.  Godwin reported the deal was structured as Graham earning $320,000 his first year, $405,000 his second year, $490,000 his third year, and $575,000 in his final year.  Graham was a two-time All Big Ten player playing tight end for the Wisconsin Badgers.  For the Texans, he has been contending for playing time behind starter Owen Daniels, and in doing so, impressing coaches especially with Daniels sidelined likely until Week 1.  Since our last analysis of the Texans TE situation in June, Michael Gaines has moved on to the Cleveland Browns, and the Texans TE situations is shaping out as so:

  1. Owen Daniels (PUP) The Texans are holding Daniels out of training camp, and I think its a good move.  Look for Daniels to await doctor’s approval before he starts football drills and later on contact.  Hopefully the wait will bring a faster recovery. For 2010, when Daniels is ready, he’ll remain one of the Texans full-time go-to-guys.
  2. Joel Dreessen – John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reported Dreessen’s still the starter until Daniels returns.  He’s a great blocking and improving receiving tight end.  Dreessen’s not as fast, agile or nifty as Casey, but he does bring a consistent check down target for QB Matt Schaub.
  3. James Casey – McClain said he’s excited to see what Casey will bring this camp.  Casey told the Associated Press that he’s confident and knows the playbook, recipes for success.  He’s a Kubiak/Former Shannahan Denver type player, and behind Daniels and Dreessen, he’ll definitely still have balls go his way.
  4. Anthony Hill HIll is currently recovering from a torn ACL and is on the PUP.  He may play before midseason.  In 2009 he recorded one reception for nine yards.
  5. Derek Fine – The third-year tight end was brought in this offseason to boost depth while Daniels and Hill on the PUP.  Fine passed up on offers from Buffalo and St. Louis to join the Texans training camp.  At the third day of camp, Allen Burge of the Examiner heard Pollard calling out Fine during training camp: “Hey Fine…82…quit holding!”

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