Season over for Texans' Slaton

Updated: December 10, 2009, 4:45 PM ET
By Paul Kuharsky | ESPN.com

The Houston Texans have placed second-year running back Steve Slaton on injured reserve with a shoulder problem, ending his season.

Coach Gary Kubiak said the specialist believes the problem will heal on its own in four to six weeks, but surgery could be an option. He said Slaton will be ready next season in any event.

"This is not career-threatening," Kubiak said. "Steve's going to be fine. He will play and play well. Everything is going to be OK. They just said that right now he doesn't need to be taking any hits over the course of the next month.

As a rookie, Slaton, a third-round pick from West Virginia, led the team with 1,282 rushing yards and nine TDs. He also caught 50 passes.

But Slaton's sophomore season wasn't nearly as good, as he struggled with fumbles. He finishes the season with 434 rushing yards, averaging 3.3 yards per carry, and caught 44 catches for 417 yards in 11 games.

Chris Henry will be promoted from the practice squad to fill the roster spot, while Ryan Moats and Chris Brown are expected to get the bulk of the carries.

"He's thinking long term and he wants to help himself as much as he can," Henry said of Slaton. "It's unfortunate, but I think in the end other people will benefit and everybody will pick up the pieces."

Paul Kuharsky covers the AFC South for ESPN.com. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

Paul Kuharsky | email

ESPN Tennessee Titans reporter