Expect the Texans to carry a fullback in 2022

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Fullback may be a dying breed across the NFL, but the position has a preserve with the Houston Texans.

According to coach Lovie Smith, the Texans are expected to carry a fullback on the roster as they deploy offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton’s system. Houston is placing a big emphasis on the run game, and one of the battering rams for the ground attack is fullback.

“Our offense, we want to be a team that can run the football,” Smith told reporters June 14 after mandatory minicamp at Houston Methodist Training Center. “We’re going to have a fullback on our roster, so, we wanted to establish that.”

The Texans currently have Paul Quessenberry and Andy Janovich on the roster as fullbacks.

Quessenberry played one game for the Texans last year in Week 16 against the Los Angeles Chargers. Houston had a depleted roster due to many players entering the COVID protocol, and Quessenberry played one offensive snap and 17 special team snaps in the 41-29 victory at NRG Stadium.

Janovich has been in the NFL since 2016 as a sixth-round pick for the Denver Broncos. The former Nebraska product carried 13 times for 51 yards and three touchdowns along with catching 22 passes for 233 yards a score through 50 games with the Broncos from 2016-19. The 6-1, 238-pound fullback played the past two years with the Cleveland Browns, catching five passes for 22 yards and carrying four times for four yards and a score through 27 games.

“You’ve seen our plays that we run,” Smith said. “You can’t get good physical work of course without pads, but the players know now their roles and how we’re going to win football games. That’s what we’ve seen, and I’m excited about what our offense will look like this fall.”

If the Texans are carrying a fullback, it also means other fullbacks across the league may have a home in Houston after the finalization of 53-man rosters at the end of preseason.

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