Texans' Owen Daniels Could Return for Final Preseason Game
It's not out of the question it could happen before that.
Daniels, the Houston Texans' Pro Bowl tight end, sustained a season-ending torn anterior cruciate ligament last November, and said earlier in training camp he hopes to be back by the regular-season opener.
Texans coach Gary Kubiak said this week the Titans haven't ruled out Daniels returning even a bit sooner.
"He is progressing very well," Kubiak said. "It picked up this week and it will pick up again next week. Do I expect to see him in the preseason? It would be the last game if we're going to see him. He's right on schedule."
Daniels, a fourth-round selection in the 2006 NFL Draft, made the Pro Bowl in 2009 following a season in which he caught 70 passes for 862 yards and two touchdowns. He was en route to the best season of his career last season when he was injured, having caught 40 passes for 519 yards and five touchdowns.
His return is one of the critical preseason storylines for the Texans. They are searching for consistency at running back to complement a passing game that features increasingly consistent quarterback Matt Schaub and perhaps the NFL's best receiver, Andre Johnson. But Daniels' ability to return to pre-injury form is critical for balance in the offense. It is doubtful Daniels would be 100 percent immediately, but the Texans would love to have him available for the season-opening showdown against the Indianapolis Colts on September 12.
Meanwhile, Kubiak said defensive tackle Amobi Okoye has shown much better effort and more consistency in training camp this season.
"I think he's quicker," Kubiak said. "I think it all kind of adds together. He's quicker and stronger. He wanted to play lighter so we let him play lighter. He looks like a better player right now."