TE Owen Daniels' impact on Texans

October, 7, 2013
10/07/13
11:01
PM ET
An injury that was not mentioned Sunday surfaced during Houston Texans coach Gary Kubiak's Monday news conference. Texans tight end Owen Daniels has a fibula injury that went through MRIs on Monday.

Monday evening Mark Berman of Fox 26 and John McClain of the Houston Chronicle simultaneously tweeted the Texans are concerned about Daniels' health enough to think he could need to go on injured reserve with a designation to return. They said more would be known about Daniels' status on Tuesday.

The offense has not been their best lately, but when they have succeeded it's often been due to their tight ends.

Six of their eight touchdowns have come on passes to tight ends -- three by Daniels and three by Garrett Graham, who's shown his talent as his role has grown.

Daniels is the Texans' second-leading receiver with 24 catches and third in receiving yards with 252.

For what they like to do, they need two capable tight ends. Houston leads the NFL in two tight-end sets. They've used the formation on 208 snaps this season, more than twice the league average of 96 snaps.

Seven of Houston's touchdowns have come on the formation. However, their yards per attempt are among the lowest in the league. The Texans have used the formation slightly less during the past three games than they did in the first two of the season, which were both wins.

What we could see if Daniels is out for any amount of time is the emergence of Ryan Griffin, the sixth-round draft pick out of Connecticut. He's one of the more successful draft picks out of this year's class, most of which is on IR. Griffin plays with an edge, he has good size and given the opportunity he might continue the Texans' tradition of hitting on tight ends.

Tania Ganguli

ESPN Houston Texans reporter

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