The Texans have had one of the best and most underrated offensive lines in the league over the past few years, propelling Arian Foster and Ben Tate to form the league’s most deadly running back duo, and helping protect Matt Schaub. Their scheme is a big part of the reason why, but also the continuity and how well the players fit the scheme is huge. Duane Brown, Wade Smith, Chris Myers, Mike Brisiel, and Eric Winston were not big names, but they were a great bunch.
Now, the Texans have lost two of those, Brisiel and Winston, thanks to their cap situation. The Texans and confident they can plug and play backups in there because of their scheme, but the lack of continuity will hurt. Just ask the Falcons after they lost Harvey Dahl last season and they were just as confident in their scheme.
The inexperienced Rashad Butler will start at right tackle in place of Winston and at right guard there appears to be a position battle brewing between career backup and former 3rd round pick (2009) Antoine Caldwell and this year’s 3rd round pick, Brandon Brooks out of Miami of Ohio. According to houstontexans.com, Brooks will, in fact, challenge for that starting job. The earlier drafted player not invited to the Combine, Brooks coming from a small school, but has an amazing mix of size (6-5 345) and speed/athleticism (sub 5.0 at his Pro Day). The Texans are confident they can coach him up.