Jonathan Grimes vs. Alfred Blue: Updates on Texans RB Battle

Sean ODonnellContributor IIIAugust 11, 2014

Houston Texans running back Alfred Blue (44) runs against the Arizona Cardinals during the first half of an NFL preseason football game, Saturday, Aug. 9, 2014, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
Rick Scuteri/Associated Press

Updates from Monday, Aug. 11

Pro Football Talk is reporting that Andre Brown has been cut by the Houston Texans:

Original Text

Former Houston Texans running back Ben Tate departed to the Cleveland Browns over the offseason. This move created a void behind veteran Arian Foster in the team's rotation—one that appeared to be filled by the acquisition of Andre Brown.   

Despite the Texans' official depth chart pinpointing Brown as the No. 2 running back, that's not at all how he's currently being utilized in Houston.

Surprisingly enough, Brown did not take the field during the team's 32-0 drubbing at the hands of the Arizona Cardinals in its preseason opener. Instead, Jonathan Grimes, Alfred Blue and Dennis Johnson saw all of the work, combining for 67 yards on 16 carries.

On Monday, head coach Bill O'Brien shed some light on the backfield situation during a press conference, via Brian T. Smith of the Houston Chronicle:

Grimes' experience overall probably has him a little ahead of Alfred. But Alfred's doing a good job for a guy that just got here.

[Brown's] battling out there. He's out there. He's involved with special teams and things like that. But that's a challenging position, it's a competitive position.

Could Brown currently be considered as the team's No. 4 running back?

That appears to be the case, as Smith also noted the limited reps Brown was given during Monday's practice. Grimes maintained his touches behind Foster, and Blue followed Grimes in the rotation. Smith expanded with another quote from O'Brien:

Brown commented on the situation, via a tweet from Dave Zangaro of, and didn't exactly appear to exude confidence in regards to his standing with the team:

Houston still has three preseason games remaining, and the team's running back battle is certainly far from over. This affair warrants keen attention as the regular season creeps closer.

These players will see in-game action again on Saturday against a revamped Atlanta Falcons defensive line that only gave up 52 yards on 21 carries to the Miami Dolphins in Week 1. This impending contest should play a crucial role in how the battle in the Texans' backfield inevitably unfolds.