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Texans' Quin might move to free safety

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Posted Feb. 27, 2011 @ 12:05 p.m. ET
By Mike Wilkening

Texans CB Glover Quin could be in the mix at free safety next season, head coach Gary Kubiak said at the NFL Scouting Combine. The Texans released Eugene Wilson, their starting free safety in 2010, on Feb. 18.

"He likes to play around the box," Kubiak, speaking to reporters in Indianapolis, said of Quin, who's entering his third season. "We play him in nickel inside. He is a physical guy. He likes to mix it up, loves to tackle, those types of things. We see him playing around the ball a lot more. He's a leader, a very smart young man. Could call (our) defenses, do those types of things for our football team. But that's still yet to be determined. It all depends on what happens throughout this offseason, the draft, because he was our best corner last year. We'll see what happens."

PFW Texans correspondent John McClain of The Houston Chronicle reported Feb. 21 that Quin could move to safety if the team adds a starter-caliber cornerback. 

At the Combine, Kubiak also said that third-year player Troy Nolan, who made three starts last season, "has got a chance to be an excellent starter" at safety.

Also of note, Kubiak gave second-year pro Kareem Jackson a strong endorsement, a signal that Jackson likely will continue to man one of the starting CB spots.

"You know, I think he is going to be a great player," Kubiak said of Jackson, who had a trying rookie season, with opponents targeting him with success. "We drafted him and put him in a tough spot as a player. We started him from Day One. We know he went through some tough times.

"… Our whole back end went through some tough times, but to be great player in this league I think you have to go through some of that. The thing that I am impressed with Kareem is that through last year he never missed a day, never missed a practice, never missed a game. When you are able to withstand that type of stuff, you will go through tough times, and the biggest bounce you usually make is from Year One to Two. So I'm expecting him to do that."

Of the cornerbacks currently on the roster, ex-Dolphin Jason Allen could be most likely to have an increased role if Quin moves to safety, but the team likely will address the position in free agency and/or the draft. Houston holds the No. 11 overall pick in Round One. PFW personnel analyst Nolan Nawrocki has the Texans taking Nebraska CB Prince Amukamara at No. 11 in his latest mock draft.

The Texans also have a decision to make on SS Bernard Pollard, who's slated to be an unrestricted free agent. Kubiak said that re-signing Pollard was "very important" but also noted: "All the guys right now that would be considered free agents are very important to our football team. But there is so much work that needs to be done between now and then, so we'll see."

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