Bonner notices, enjoys attention from Kubiak

Bonner notices, enjoys attention from Kubiak
May 28, 2013, 6:45 pm
Share This Post

Several times during the first four days of the Texans’ organized team activities, head coach Gary Kubiak has watched a play unfold before singling out one offensive player.

Kubiak will yell for Alan Bonner. Then, the rookie will run over to the head coach to receive some extra instruction.

Maybe, it’s a suggestion. Maybe, it’s to yell at him or tell him what he’s doing wrong.

Either way, Kubiak has seemingly taken a special interest in the sixth-round wide receiver from Jacksonville State.

“Yessir,” Bonner said when asked if he’s noticed some special attention from the head coach.

“I just know he’s pushing me to the max,” Bonner continued. “He wants me to be at my best potential. He ain’t going to let up on me. I encourage that and I want that out of my head coach.”

Kubiak has actually shown a deep interest in Bonner since before the 5-10 receiver from Jacksonville State ever stepped foot on the football field as a Texan. After the 2013 draft was completed, GM Rick Smith and Kubiak were asked by a member of the Houston media to pick one player to watch from the later rounds of the draft.

Smith picked defensive tackle Chris Jones from Bowling Green. Kubiak said he liked that pick but chose Bonner instead.

“There’s a big step for him to take from where he’s coming from,” Kubiak said in late April. “He’s going to get a great opportunity with us. We’re so young at wide receiver, there are plenty of reps to go around, and I think this kid’s got some special stuff to him. We’ll just sit there and work with him but I think he’s got a chance to help our football team.”

During his senior season in college, Bonner led the Gamecocks with 50 catches, 859 receiving yards and eight touchdowns. He ranks second on the school’s all-time career receiving yards (1,986) and receiving touchdowns (20) lists. When Bonner was taken with the 195th overall pick, he was the first player from Jacksonville State to be taken in the draft since 1991.

Bonner thinks he’s getting extra attention from the head coach because Kubiak notices the potential in him.

“Yeah,” Bonner said. “He sees the potential in me and everything and he just wants me to get the whole mental aspect and grasp it fast and pick up with the vets. He just wants me to be at my full potential.”

The rookies, Bonner included, took a collective step backward on Tuesday, the first day of the second round of OTAs.

“Obviously, we’re getting into a lot more stuff this week,” Kubiak said, “so the challenge gets bigger.”

Bonner said he’s still learning the plays and getting used to being in the NFL. It’s a process and not one that moves extremely fast for many players. While first-round pick DeAndre Hopkins has been working with the first unit, there are plenty of other young receivers for Bonner to battle with. Lestar Jean and Keshawn Martin are the returning wideouts, while there are also several undrafted rookie free agents in camp too.  
“I’m getting to where I need to be. It’s coming along,” Bonner said. “I don’t think any of the rookies, right now, are really where they want to be right now. But like I said, we’re in the process of getting there and getting where we want to be.”

A lot has been made of Andre Johnson’s mentoring Hopkins since the Texans used their first-round pick on the wideout from Clemson. The two are seen walking onto the field with each other everyday and sit next to one another in the film room.

But Johnson isn’t just mentoring Hopkins. He gives tips to all the young receivers, Bonner included. Johnson doesn’t talk much, but when he does, the receivers listen.

“He’s got the most respect around here on the offensive side of the ball,” Bonner said. “From my standpoint, he’s got the most respect. Him telling me a few things means a lot to me.”

Texans - Team News
Alfred Blue - RB
Alfred Blue (ankle) is listed as probable for Week 9. He's ready to go as Arian Foster's caddie against the Eagles.
Oct 31 2:55PM Read More
Arian Foster - RB
Arian Foster (knee) is listed as probable for Week 9. He'll be all systems go against the Eagles' solid run defense.
Oct 31 2:54PM Read More
Andre Johnson - WR
Andre Johnson (ankle) is listed as probable for Week 9. Johnson is a legitimate WR1 against the Eagles' inconsistent secondary.
Oct 31 2:53PM Read More
Jadeveon Clowney - LB
Jadeveon Clowney (illness) is expected to miss Week 9 against the Eagles. Updating a previous item, Clowney appears to be over his early-season knee injury. But he is dealing with an illness. Clowney's absence is an upgrade to Nick Foles'...
Oct 31 1:11PM Read More
Alfred Blue - RB
Alfred Blue (ankle) remained limited in Thursday's practice. Arian Foster's caddie is in no danger of missing Week 9.
Oct 30 3:41PM Read More
Andre Johnson - WR
Andre Johnson (ankle) returned to Texans practice Thursday, getting in a limited session. Johnson was never in any danger of missing Sunday's game against the Eagles. With six teams on bye for Week 9, Johnson is a WR1.
Oct 30 3:40PM Read More
Arian Foster - RB
Arian Foster (knee) returned to Texans practice Thursday, getting in a limited session. The Texans are just managing their superstar back's reps. With DeMarco Murray facing the Cardinals' elite run defense, there's a case to be made for Foster as Week 9's No. 1...
Oct 30 3:39PM Read More
Alfred Blue - RB
Alfred Blue (ankle) was limited in Wednesday's practice. Blue got first-team reps with Arian Foster (knee) not practicing. The Texans also held out Andre Johnson (ankle) on Wednesday.
Oct 29 5:15PM Read More
Andre Johnson - WR
Andre Johnson (ankle) did not practice Wednesday. The Texans are limiting Johnson's reps for rest purposes. He didn't suffer any setbacks last week and should be fine for Sunday's game against the Eagles.
Oct 29 3:43PM Read More
Arian Foster - RB
Arian Foster (knee) did not practice Wednesday. It's a new injury for Foster. Coming off his three-touchdown performance, it's possible the Texans are getting him some rest. Foster will be a top-three running back in Week...
Oct 29 3:18PM Read More
Zac Diles - LB
Texans signed LB Zac Diles. CB Elbert Mack was waived in a corresponding roster move. Diles' addition is a sign the Texans aren't expecting Brian Cushing (knee) back for Week 9.
Oct 28 4:04PM Read More
Garrett Graham - TE
Garrett Graham was held without a catch in the Texans' Week 8 win over Tennessee. Graham was targeted just one time on the day, a seam shot from Ryan Fitzpatrick that predictably fell incomplete. Graham has been a very minor part of the offense, making...
Oct 26 4:53PM Read More
Andre Johnson - WR
Andre Johnson caught seven passes for 55 yards in the Texans' Week 8 win over the Titans. Johnson saw a team-high dozen targets. He was followed by Titans top CB Jason McCourty for much of the afternoon, leaving DeAndre Hopkins to work on sophomore Blidi...
Oct 26 4:44PM Read More
DeAndre Hopkins - WR
DeAndre Hopkins caught five passes for 95 yards in the Texans' Week 8 win over the Titans. Hopkins was targeted 11 times compared to 12 for Andre Johnson. Hopkins picked up chunk yards on all of his grabs, and was stopped at the five-yard line on one grab where...
Oct 26 4:24PM Read More
Alfred Blue - RB
Alfred Blue rushed for 42 yards on 14 carries in the Texans' Week 8 win over the Titans. Blue added a 22-yard catch. With the Texans clobbering the Titans late and Arian Foster having already piled up 173 yards and three touchdowns, Blue got plenty of run late...
Oct 26 4:11PM Read More

More Team Talk