Texans name mid-season captains
It's always an honor to have the admiration of your colleagues. J.J. Watt, Chris Myers and Shiloh Keo have been voted by their teammates as the newest group of captains of the Texans. Andre Johnson, Matt Schaub, Antonio Smith, Brian Cushing and Tim Dobbins were named captains at the start of the season.
"I like doing it at the halfway mark because your teams are always different," Kubiak said. "It kind of lets the guys stand up and say, ‘We see what you’re doing. You’re leading us in the right direction. Keep doing it.’ I think they picked three great players there. Had a lot of guys get votes.”
This isn't the first time that Myers has been named a midseason captain. The Texans' center is having a Pro Bowl caliber season leading Houston's offensive line.
"Chris has always been a leader," offensive coordinator Rick Dennison said. "But I think you can see him being more of a vocal leader. His experience, not just here, but around the league, has been great for those young guys. He’s coaching them up as they go and always working because he understands that those five have to work as a unit. He’s really the cog. He’s the only one that could push a call from one side or the other to make sure all five of them are working together.”
Keo and Watt are both in their second seasons in the NFL. It speaks volumes for both players character to be named captains so early in their careers. Keo has been a standout on special teams and has impressed Kubiak from the practice field to the film room.
“He’s a real sharp player," Kubiak said. "You watch him in the meetings. He’s on top of what he’s doing. He’s an effort young man. That’s his big role on our team, playing special teams. Our guys respect his effort, how he plays, how he goes about his business."
“It means the world because being voted captain is being voted by your peers," Keo added. "For them to vote me, it’s just very special. Like I said before, it’s just now I’ve got to go out and I’ve got to push myself even harder. I’ve got to make plays all the time. I’ve got to be in the right spot and have to expect that. I have to get everyone else to hold themselves accountable as well.”
Watt has been maybe the biggest star this season in the NFL. He leads the NFL in sacks with 10.5 and is having the type of season that brings all sorts of hardware. But being named a caption might be the biggest honor thus far this season.
“It’s an honor," Watt said Wednesday. "Obviously, more than anything outside of this room, more than any media member can say anything about me, first and foremost, is always the respect of your teammates. So that’s why it’s such an honor. I’m going to do every single thing I can to make my teammates proud every single week and help this team win games. It’s very humbling."
"He’s pretty quiet," Kubiak said. "J.J. is an all-business type of guy. We’ve got a lot of married family guys on our team. J.J. is still a young, single guy. He handles his business so well. He’s all about the game. He’s studying all the time, working all the time, and all about his team. For a very, very young player, that’s a tremendous compliment.”
"It’s very motivating for me," Watt added. "I want to go out there and prove that I earned that ‘C’ and that I deserve that ‘C.’ It’s one of those things that’s going to make me work even harder in the weight room, in the film room, on the game field, on the practice field to make my teammates proud, to make this city proud, to my make family proud.”
The Texans will keep their previous team captains in place.
"They only let you send so many to midfield so I’ll get them a jersey with ‘C’ on it, but it’s more of a respect thing than anything," Kubiak said.