Lamar Miller hadn’t played in the first two preseason games. He’s a seven-year veteran.
Yet, the Houston Texans felt the need to get him a handful of carries in the third preseason game like that was going to make a big difference.
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Miller suffered what looked like a serious knee injury on his first preseason carry. Dallas Cowboys defensive tackle Maliek Collins hit Miller on the outside of Miller’s knee, which buckled. Miller fumbled and went down. He was carted to the locker room.
(UPDATE: NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported the Texans believe Miller tore his ACL)
The Texans presumably don’t feel anymore like it was worth it to play their Pro Bowl running back for a few snaps in the preseason.
Lamar Miller made Pro Bowl
Miller made his first Pro Bowl last season. He had 973 yards and five touchdowns. The Texans appeared set to use a 1-2 punch of Miller and Duke Johnson, who they just acquired in a trade with Cleveland.
Perhaps the injury isn’t as bad as it looked. But it did look bad. If it’s something that keeps Miller out a while, or the whole season, that’s a major blow to the Texans.
Johnson would presumably take over lead back duties. There’s not much behind him. But hey, at least the Texans got Miller that one preseason carry.
Teams taking different approach to preseason
Teams are rethinking the preseason. Some teams like the Los Angeles Rams and Chicago Bears barely play any key players at all in the preseason. Because is there really an upside to playing your starters a few snaps? Does a longtime veteran really need a dozen snaps to be ready for Week 1? Probably not.
More teams will sit starters during the preseason, finding other ways to be ready for Week 1. The Texans probably wish they had.
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