Ahead of their Week 10 clash against the Cincinnati Bengals, the Houston Texans are set to bolster their secondary with the return of cornerback Derek Stingley. Recovering from a hamstring injury sustained in a Week 3 practice, Stingley, the 2022 No. 2 pick, is back in action after a series of setbacks in his first two seasons, including a foot injury that limited his playing time to just three games during his final season at LSU.
Despite the challenges, Stingley has showcased promising talent when on the field. In 2022, opposing quarterbacks had a modest 70.1 passer rating when targeting him, and remarkably, he hasn’t allowed a touchdown in coverage throughout his 11-game career.
Stingley’s comeback is timely, given the recent string of injuries in the Texans’ secondary. During the Week 9 matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, cornerback Steven Nelson (neck), safety Jimmie Ward (hamstring), and defensive back M.J. Stewart (shoulder) suffered injuries. Stewart has been placed on injured reserve, Ward is ruled out for Week 10, and Nelson is listed as questionable. In response to the depleted secondary, the Texans have signed defensive back Grayland Arnold to the active roster.
Not limited to the secondary, the Texans also faced challenges in their kicking department. Kicker Ka’imi Fairbairn sustained a quad injury in the second quarter against the Buccaneers. In an unusual turn of events, running back Dare Ogunbowale stepped in, making a 29-yard field goal in the fourth quarter. This marked the first instance since 2004 when wide receiver Wes Welker achieved a similar feat for the Miami Dolphins.
Fairbairn’s quad injury has led to his placement on the injured reserve, prompting the Texans to sign kicker Matt Amendola during the week and elevate him to the 53-man roster in preparation for the upcoming matchup against the Bengals.