With Tyler Ervin likely to miss more time due to a rib injury, the Houston Texans are expected keep rookie Will Fuller as their primary punt returner when the Texans take on the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.
Fuller was the primary punt returner when Houston fell to San Diego last week, but his performance was far from perfect, returning three punts for 27 yards.
Recording a 4.28 second 40-yard dash, Fuller is the fastest player on the Texans’ roster, and he showed flashes of his speed against the Tennessee Titans earlier this season, taking a punt return to the house, which would wind up being the final touchdown scored in this game, as Houston would go on to win by a score of 27-20.
“Erwin probably won’t be back this week,” Texans head coach Bill O’Brien said. “I really wanted Will back there. Obviously, in the Tennessee game, he gave us a big boost with a touchdown return. With this game, I thought there was a lot he could learn from. We had a wall return set up and I think he went the wrong way.”
Against the Chargers, Fuller hauled in four passes for 60 yards. One of his catches was for 33 yards, which would put Houston deep in San Diego territory, setting up the Texans to score their first points of the game.
It was Fuller’s most productive game since his impressive outing against the Titans in Week 4. Against Tennessee, Fuller caught seven passes for 81 yards, one of those catches being an incredible one-handed grab. He also found the end zone twice, catching a touchdown pass and returning a punt for a 67-yard score.
Until the San Diego game, Fuller had been quiet after his explosive performance against Tennessee, catching a combined total of seven passes for 66 yards in six games, not putting up any points on the scoreboard.
“I thought he played well,” O’Brien said. “Receiving wise, he made some very tough catches.”