D.J. Reader Is Ready To Step Up If Vince Wilfork Can’t Go Sunday

By: Joshua Reese

Houston (CBS HOUSTON) – All week Vince Wilfork has been dealing with a groin injury and it’s forced to miss each practice. The Houston Texans are now looking at the reality that they could be without their veteran nose tackle.

Wilfork will travel with the team to Jacksonville, but whether or not he will play is up in the air.

“We’ll make a determination probably sometime on Sunday,” Bill O’Brien said. “He’s a veteran, he knows what he’s got to do to get ready to play. It’ll be more about, you know, he and I sitting down and determining whether he can do it this week.”

If Wilfork can’t go, the man most likely the team will lean on to step up in the short term is rookie D.J. Reader.

During this past draft, the Texans spent a fifth-round pick on Reader, and he’s been trusted to give the team quality snaps as a reserve.

“I’m progressing along, it’s starting to fill a little bit better being out there,” Reader told sportsradio610.com.

O’Brien earlier in the week shared that he has been happy with what Reader has been able to give the team this year.

“(He’s) hard to move in the running game and he’s actually given us a little bit of inside pass rush on third down and things like that,” O’Brien said.

With the play that Reader has provided and the fact that the team is playing the Jacksonville Jaguars, there is a chance the Texans could let Wilfork rest and get healthier for next week.

If Wilfork does miss Sunday, Reader is more than happy to step up in the short term and keep Wilfork’s seat warm.

“(I’m) ready to step in there and hold down the fort till big dog (Wilfork) gets back,” Reader said. “If that happens, I’m ready to step into that role.”

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