(Credit: Will Grubb / CBS Houston)

(Credit: Will Grubb / CBS Houston)

The Texans had a 3-1 preseason and had some good position battles, highlighted by an interesting back up QB battle between T.J. Yates and Case Keenum. This is Week 1 of the regular season and what Texans players are worth keeping an eye on while the team takes on the San Diego Chargers.

1. (S) Shiloh Keo
So the buzz all preseason, will Ed Reed play or will he not…. Back and forth we went, after all the speculation Ed Reed will NOT start on Monday night. Shiloh Keo WILL start for Ed Reed during the 1st game with the Chargers, no telling if Reed will get any action vs the Chargers but it is unlikely. Chargers QB Phillip Rivers will look to test Keo, expect TE Antonio Gates to see some passes.

2. (RB) Arian Foster/Ben Tate
Foster had 0 action in the preseason and while it would have been nice to see him get reps, it’s not really that necessary. Ben Tate has looked to be the 2011 Ben Tate, and coach Kubiak has said he is going to rotate backs. Look for both to get bunch of carries and fest against the Chargers 3-4, ILB starter Manti Te’o is out and back up Bront Bird will be starting in his place.

3. (DE) JJ Watt
Fellow DE Antonio Smith is out till the next game, will JJ Watt step up in Smith’s absence? Will JJ Watt continue where he left off and have a monster opening game? These are the questions we want asked…. JJ moves all around the line, so look for JJ to try to take advantage of Chargers rookie RT D.J. Fluker.

4. (LG) Wade Smith
Almost a month removed from arthroscopic surgery on his knee Smith is primed for a return. The pro bowl LG has missed some time but says he feels like he is ready to play Monday night vs. The Chargers. Look for Chagres DC John Pagano to create some rushes to test Smith early.

5. (WR) DeAndre Hopkins
He has been out a little while following a concussion but now seems geared up for action against the Chargers. After years of lacking a true WR to complement Andre Johnson, the team will get to see what life is like to have an explosive number 2 WR (no offense to Kevin Walters).

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