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Romeo Crennel: Clowney has to earn playing time


When the Texans drafted Jadeveon Clowney with the first overall pick last month, they did so knowing that he would have to make the transition from defensive end to outside linebacker.

Such transitions can be bumpy, but it was hard to find anyone that thought Houston would have used the pick on Clowney if they weren’t confident that he’d be able to make the move quickly enough to be on the field right away. Defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel doesn’t want Clowney or anyone else taking that for granted, however.

“He’s going to earn his spot, in my eyes. … If he learns, then chances are that he’ll get playing time,” Crennel said, via the Houston Chronicle. “If he doesn’t learn, then he probably won’t get as much playing time. And now then that’s where [Whitney] Mercilus, he’s going to be there and he’s going to play. Or if it’s Brooks [Reed], Brooks is going to play.”

There’s not much for the Texans to gain from just handing the job to Clowney without even a limited competition for playing time, but it is difficult to believe that the first overall pick isn’t going to have a prominent role on the Texans’ defense once the regular season rolls around. Mercilus is already pencilled into one starting role and Reed is working on the inside, which doesn’t leave the Texans with other realistic choices to start ahead of Clowney in September.

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18 Responses to “Romeo Crennel: Clowney has to earn playing time”
  1. brandonj21 says: Jun 10, 2014 3:52 PM

    If he is not starting and playing major minutes , then “Houston ….we have a problem”

  2. midnite2020 says: Jun 10, 2014 4:03 PM

    And you’ll be out of a job

  3. thestrategyexpert says: Jun 10, 2014 4:04 PM

    HA! Yeah right, he’s going to get a lot of playing time regardless. Even if he had a lousy attitude behind the scenes and was terrible the fans would never forgive the team if they didn’t put him out there an ample amount of time to see if he can get better. He doesn’t have to earn anything in my eyes at a bare minimum to succeed at getting paid many millions of dollars.

  4. captainwisdom8888 says: Jun 10, 2014 4:13 PM

    Bringing in a guy like Clowney does help slightly, but it wouldn’t matter if the Texans had the very best defense in all of football…until they find a QB who can lead the team to success on offense than this team is doomed to fail each and every year.

  5. rcali says: Jun 10, 2014 4:16 PM

    Ha ha. That’s kinda cute of him to say that. Hope he doesn’t get taken off the Practice squad by another team!

  6. laboni64 says: Jun 10, 2014 4:22 PM

    Nice try Romeo………He is one of the faces of your organization now

  7. tackledbyaflag says: Jun 10, 2014 4:34 PM

    Flip a coin and then go to Whataburger. It’s what you do best Romeo.

  8. sopadegato says: Jun 10, 2014 4:37 PM

    It’s almost like they should have drafted a damn linebacker instead of trying to shoehorn a DE with terrible football skills into a position he isn’t qualified to play.

  9. mackcarrington says: Jun 10, 2014 4:47 PM

    Why can’t these fool coaches keep their fool mouths shut? You don’t make a #1 draft pick earn anything. He already earned a starting job by being the no.1 overall pick. The job is his to lose.

  10. timpiker says: Jun 10, 2014 4:51 PM

    And the parallel to similar comments made about Manziel? Since when is earning it a bad thing?

  11. youtubeingravenvids says: Jun 10, 2014 4:53 PM

    He’s just trying to “motivate” him. You don’t spend a 1st OVERALL pick to have him sit on the bench,

  12. weepingjebus says: Jun 10, 2014 5:02 PM

    Clowney, Mercilus, Brooks. Which of these three will earn the coveted Texans letterman jacket?

  13. stevent92 says: Jun 10, 2014 5:11 PM


    And Andrew Luck had to “earn” the QB spot in Indy.

    And RGIII had to ‘earn’ his Playing Time in Washington.

    And Eric Fischer had to ‘work his way into’ the Chiefs’ starting line.

    Yeah right.

  14. granadafan says: Jun 10, 2014 5:54 PM

    Crennel is just trying to keep Clowney’s ego in check. He’s starting.

  15. oilerthentexandiehard says: Jun 10, 2014 6:18 PM

    The Texans have real football coaches now. I hope they get him good and pissed off before they put him in. Good luck, Luck.

    Oh yeah, watch out for JJ.

  16. samcrew93 says: Jun 10, 2014 6:34 PM

    What a transparent statement by Crennel…

  17. nouhoh64 says: Jun 10, 2014 8:34 PM

    What else is Romeo supposed to say during OTA’S? It’s June not September.

  18. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Jun 11, 2014 7:29 AM

    It’s comical to read these “must earn playing time” comments knowing the owner will have every expectation of seeing the top pick in the draft on the field no matter what.

    OK he must earn it, we will play along.

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