It certainly seems like Alfred Blue and the Houston Texans are not long for each other. The signing of Lamar Miller last season certainly tipped the scales in that direction. If there were any remaining questions about his long term future, they became even murkier after drafting D’Onta Foreman. What does Blue’s future hold?
A career 3.6 yards per carry runner, he is more of a complimentary back than the bell cow. He has filled the role as the secondary back ever since his arrival in Houston. Backing up Arian Foster for two seasons before last season backing up Miller.
Blue had a shot to stake his claim to the starting running back position in 2015. Foster missed 12 games that season which gave Blue a chance to earn the job. However Blue failed to impress the coaching staff which relegated him back to the bench. Blue had 183 rushing attempts for 698 yards and two touchdowns. His 3.8 yards per carry in 2015 is not impressive.
The passing game is not a strength for Blue, only totaling 42 total receptions over three seasons. His value lies in the running game only. Even considering his lack of production he experienced a career low in yards per reception with 3.3. In 2014 he had 7.5 yards per reception and 2015 had 7.3 yards per reception. The dip in production in 2016 is quite alarming.
Miller had a near career year for the Texans, rushing for 1073 yards and five touchdowns. Even catching 31 passes for 188 yards and one touchdown. Miller has cemented himself as the long term starter for Houston. His productivity further dims Blue’s future in Houston.
The selection of Foreman in the draft all but erases Blue’s future. Foreman’s skill set matches what Blue already provides. Foreman is primarily a runner who does not have much value in the passing game. Only managing 13 receptions over three seasons at Texas, Foreman’s value is purely in the running game.
The Texans now have a decision to make as a result of the running backs on the roster. Keep Blue and have a crowded backfield, or let him go and use Miller and Foreman as the primary running backs. Miller has shown an ability to be productive in the passing game and Foreman has the potential to be a great between the tackles runner.
Blue’s future in Houston has become bleak, this is because Houston has seen all he has to offer in terms of skills. Blue had the chance to earn the starting job, but was just unable to make it his. Houston has signed and drafted replacements to all but force him out of town. It would not be surprising to see Blue suiting up for a different team when the season starts.