Texans' fantasy questions for the offseason

Posted Feb. 13, 2012 @ 10:12 a.m.
Posted By William Del Pilar

13th in a series.                                                                       

The Texans have questions at the WR position but gained valuable experience with T.J. Yates at quarterback. However, the future of Matt Leinart is probably unclear right now.

Here are some questions about the Texans entering the offseason:

Will QB Matt Schaub return from his injury and be effective?

Schaub is recovering from a Lisfranc injury, but should be ready by training camp at 100 percent health. In 10 games last season, he averaged 247.9 yards and 1.5 TDs with 0.6 interceptions. The team is now a run-heavy offense and he's a game manager with upside, making him a No. 2 fantasy QB entering the season.

What is RB Ben Tate's value?

Tate's problem is that he was not consistently used because Arian Foster was so effective. Foster is not going anywhere despite being a restricted free agent and, although Tate showed great value, he had only two weeks of 100-plus rushing yards while sharing the backfield with Foster. Outside of those two weeks he was hit-and-miss, giving him value in larger leagues with his real strength as a handcuff to Foster's owners. Many will overvalue Tate, but if you don't get Foster and have Tate, understand he's only taking up a roster spot barring injury to Foster. Tate's not used much as a receiver, going 13-98-0 on 19 targets, but did have an average of 11.7 carries for 62.8 yards and 0.3 TDs as a runner. However, if you remove the first three games when Foster was hurt or not 100 percent, Tate's average was only 9.1 attempts for 53.4 yards and 0.25 TDs — hence his value is for larger leagues only.

Will the team find a complementary wide receiver to Andre Johnson?

In the playoffs against the Bengals and Ravens, Johnson caught 13-201-1 on 24 targets, showing how elite he can be when healthy. However, neither Kevin Walter (29-474-3 on 59 targets during the regular season) nor Jacoby Jones (31-512-2 on 65 targets) were consistent enough for either the Texans or fantasy owners to be happy. Jones has a base salary of $3 million and his play as a No. 3 receiver might be questioned after failing to step up when Johnson was out with injury. Even if Jones sticks around, he has minimal value. Walter has no upside and is more of a possession receiver with little value. Because of their subpar seasons, the team is expected to explore other options.

Will TE Owen Daniels ever regain his pre-injury numbers?

Daniels has not been the same since 2009 after suffering a devastating knee injury and this year's production of 3.4 catches for 42.3 yards and 0.19 TDs per game left much to be desired. His future doesn't look good for fantasy owners, as Andre Johnson will be healthy and the team could upgrade the WR position, possibly costing Daniels more targets. There's also the transition to a run-heavy offense that was a big reason for his downfall alongside Joel Dreessen vulturing six TDs. Entering 2012, Daniels is nothing more than a low-end No. 2 fantasy tight end.

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