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Injuries have taken toll on Texans O-line

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Recent posts by Arthur Arkush

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Posted Dec. 14, 2012 @ 4:32 p.m. ET
By Arthur Arkush

There is an old adage in the NFL: sometimes you don’t know how well someone is playing until he’s not there.

Texans fans have found out the hard way how solid second-year ORT Derek Newton was playing, now that they have seen veteran Ryan Harris struggle in place of Newton the past two weeks.

Rotating with Newton roughly every third series before the starter was knocked out of the Thanksgiving Day game against the Lions with a knee injury, Harris has been mediocre at best, we hear, and, along with rookie ORG Ben Jones, was completely overwhelmed by Patriots DT Vince Wilfork and New England’s defensive front in Week 14.

Word is Harris just doesn’t have the agility he did before missing all of 2011 with a back injury. The good news is that Newton is expected back healthy soon.

Jones’ game is all about quickness, but he was no match for the great strength and power of Wilfork. Even so, we hear the Texans are pleased with his development, fully expecting some growing pains along the way from their rebuilt right side of the offensive line. But getting back Newton — as well as Antoine Caldwell, who was rotating with Jones before suffering a hamstring injury in Detroit — should give this struggling unit a lift.

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