HOUSTON -- Garrett Graham already had his number called, contributing in an expected capacity as the Texans' third-string-turned-backup tight end with a 24-yard catch in the third quarter Sunday at Reliant Stadium.
Late in the fourth quarter, Graham experienced the unexpected. Starting outside linebacker Brooks Reed had played way too many snaps in a game that meant little to the Texans, and reserve Bryan Braman had departed prematurely due to a stinger. Graham was drafted as the "next man up" despite not having taken a snap on defense since high school.
"I was excited. I didn't know what was going on at first," Texans inside linebacker DeMeco Ryans said while flashing a broad smile. "I was like, OK, we're going to throw him out there at outside linebacker.' He did a good job staying outside. He did his job and we got a caused fumble on there. He's our secret weapon to get us that turnover there at the end."
As Ryans noted, the Texans earned the right to tinker with rotations, to...