Draft Scout Snapshot: As expected, general manager Rick Smith was able to bolster depth at receiver and in the offensive line, the two most desperate areas on the team. He drafted two receivers and three linemen, and he didn't start to fill those needs until the third round. Smith also drafted a kicker for the first time in franchise history. BEST PICK: Outside linebacker Whitney Mercilus: Defensive coordinator Wade Phillips envisions Mercilus coming off the bench in passing situations. He would be paired with starting outside linebackers Connor Barwin and Brooks Reed, defensive tackles J.J. Watt and Antonio Smith and inside linebacker Brian Cushing. Mercilus probably will play weak-side end in the nickel so they can take advantage of his speed coming off the edge. - The Sports Xchange
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01/08/17 - Whitney Mercilus, who along with Clowney and linebacker Benardrick McKinney was named second team All-Pro this week, produced tangible statistical results with seven tackles, three TFLs and two sacks. A first-round pick in 2012, Mercilus emerged last season with a dozen sacks working in tandem with Watt. This season, he had a career-high 53 tackles and recovered four fumbles to complement his 7.5 sacks. Without Watt, Mercilus and Clowney now serve as the Texans' fearsome rush duo. No amount of attention lavished upon Watt can take away from the impact Mercilus and Clowney routinely have. "We take it to heart," Mercilus said of the general disregard of the Texans defense. "Nobody really gives us a lot of credit or anything to come out here and play the way that we do and continue on this playoff race to get to that Super Bowl."
12/26/16 - OLB Whitney Mercilus had two sacks in his first game back from a back injury. The 26-year-old has 7.5 this season.
12/21/16 - OLB Whitney Mercilus (back) returned to practice.
12/19/16 - OLB Whitney Mercilus missed Sunday's game with a back injury. His status for Saturday's game is unknown.
12/18/16 - LB Whitney Mercilus (back) did not play Sunday.
10/19/16 - OLB Whitney Mercilus already has 4 1/2 sacks and has emerged as one of the top pass rushers in the game. He's been extremely consistent as an edge rusher in the wake of the season-ending back injury suffered by J.J. Watt.
09/14/16 - OLB Whitney Mercilus of the Texans has been named the AFC Defensive Player of the Week. Mercilus recorded four tackles, two sacks, two quarterback hits, one tackle for loss and one forced fumble in Houston's 23-14 victory against the Bears.
08/02/16 - OLB Whitney Mercilus has recovered fully from a hamstring injury that sidelined him during the spring.
06/16/16 - OLB Whitney Mercilus remains sidelined with a hamstring injury. Mercilus is expected to make a full recovery before training camp.
06/10/16 - OLB Whitney Mercilus remained sidelined Friday with a hamstring injury.