In their 20-13 week 8 win over the Lions Sunday at NRG Stadium, the Texans wide receivers caught a total of eight passes for 85 yards, and until the end of the game, were kept quiet on the ground, so the offense needed to get production somewhere, enter the tight ends.
The trio of C.J. Fiedorowicz, Ryan Griffin, and Stephen Anderson had at least two catches apiece, combining for half of Brock Osweiler’s 20 receptions, though the gameplan didn’t call for the group to be more of a factor in the offense than normal, but circumstances changed that.
“It was just a regular week, but we had some wide receivers go down, so we adjusted,” Griffin said.
Will Fuller left the game in the first half with a leg injury, though he did return. Jaelen Strong injured his ankle in the second half. He did not return and was wearing a walking boot in the Texans locker room after the game.
Griffin caught three passes for 34 yards including a 23-yard reception on the Texans second drive of the day, which help setup the game’s first score, a 6-yard touchdown pass to Fiedorowicz, who had a 5-catch, 43 yard afternoon. Anderson caught a pair of balls for 17 yards.
Fiedorowicz is now second on the team in receptions, and his three touchdowns are tied for the team lead. He had 21 total catches in his first two NFL seasons, but halfway through year three he’s at 26, though he doesn’t want to take all the credit.
“You’ve gotta give props to (tight ends coach John Perry),” he said. “He’s been doing a great job coaching us, and we really appreciate everything he does.”
According to Fiedorowicz, having the tight ends more involved in the offense will only help its productivity.
“It’s gonna open up the outside. It’s going to open up the running game. The receivers compliment us, we compliment them. It just keeps the defense on their heels because it doesn’t know what’s coming”