'We Need Kenny': Stills Returns At Right Time For Texans

Stills' 19.5 yards per reception leads the team

Brandon Scott
October 25, 2019 - 10:10 am

HOUSTON (SportsRadio 610) -- With Will Fuller V out because of a hamstring injury, the Texans are down not only a major deep threat but one of the most productive wide receivers in football when he’s healthy.

Fuller is one of three players in the NFL with at least 14 receiving touchdowns on less than 150 targets since 2017.

He is the team’s second-leading receiver behind DeAndre Hopkins with 450 yards and three touchdowns on 34 catches.

Deshaun Watson has a lot of weapons this season and Kenny Stills has been among the best of them.

Inserting Stills into the equation softens the blow of losing Fuller, who is expected to miss significant time.

Stills missed most of three games with a hamstring injury of his own, but he’s back just in time to help pick up the slack when Fuller’s sidelined.

“It helps,” Texans offensive coordinator Tim Kelly said after Thursday’s practice. “Kenny’s a good player. They’re all good players so the challenge that we have as a coaching staff is finding ways to take advantage of their different skills.”

The Texans traded for Stills on Aug. 31 in what was deemed the Laremy Tunsil deal - two first round picks and a second round pick for the franchise left tackle and Stills.

Stills was the Texans second-leading pass catcher before he pulled his hamstring against the Carolina Panthers.

He has 15 catches on 19 targets for 293 yards and a touchdown. His 19.5 yards per reception leads the team.

Stills told reporters Thursday that week-to-week, it's understood among the receivers Hopkins is going to get a lot of attention, often double teams.

"It's on us to go out there and make plays, the guys that are open," Stills said. "The other team knows (Hopkins) is liable to make a play at any point and time. So it's on us, the rest of this group, to make sure that we're making plays when he's taking two guys away from the defense."

O’Brien said earlier this week Stills called the go route for the Texans’ first touchdown against the Colts, a 45-yard play.

“Kenny’s an excellent player. We need Kenny,” Texans head coach Bill O’Brien said earlier this week. “Kenny does a lot of great things for us. He’s got good leadership qualities. He wants the ball. He called that go route, he called that play. He knew that he could win on that one and we went to that play. He’s got good chemistry with Deshaun and Kenny’s been a good addition to our team.”

The Texans host the Oakland Raiders on Sunday at 3:25 p.m. CT.

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