After several productive seasons in Miami – he had 2,643 total yards and 19 touchdowns (16 rushing, three receiving) over the last two years – Lamar Miller signed a four-year deal with the Houston Texans in March. Thus, he went from one franchise with a young quarterback in Ryan Tannehill to another with Brock Osweiler.
The early reviews on Osweiler? All positive.
“He’s been doing a great job,” Miller said on CBS Sports Radio’s Tiki and Tierney. “Just coming here, learning a whole new offense and the different schemes – he’s (been working hard) since day one. Just having a guy like that who takes control of the offense and (is) a vocal leader (who) wants to be successful is always good. He put in the work. He’s always in the study room, watching film, and going over different things. That’s always a positive from your quarterback.”
Miller, a fourth-round selection in 2012, saw many of the same traits in Tannehill, a former eighth overall pick. Tannehill has been teetering on a breakout year for several seasons. Last year, for example, he threw for 4,208 yards, 24 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. Those are good, solid numbers. But they’re not great.
Still, Miller believes Tannehill has what it takes to be an elite quarterback.
“Yeah, I always had faith in Tannehill,” Miller said. “We came in together. He was a very hard worker. He always came in to work. He always wanted to be better. So I think yeah, he’ll have a good career.”
The same can be said for DeAndre Hopkins, who had 111 catches for 1,521 yards and 11 touchdowns last season.
“Since the first day I stepped on the field with him, I saw him catch the ball with one hand, but how he caught it, it was amazing,” Miller said. “He’s a guy that comes to work every day and wants to get better. That’s something that you like to see on your team. He wants to be great. You can tell he has a competitive nature about himself. That’s always a good sign.”
The Texans won the AFC South last year in large part because of their defense. Unfortunately for Houston, J.J. Watt, who has played in 80 consecutive games, might not be ready for the Texans’ Week 1 tilt against Chicago. The three-time Defensive Player of the Year is still recovering from surgery to repair a herniated disc.
Miller isn’t worried.
“Not really,” he said. “Every day he comes to work, get treatment, do what he got to do, whatever the trainers tell him to do. I think he’ll be fine.”
In the end, Miller is eager to carry the load in an offense that has been mighty generous to running backs in recent years.
“I’m ready for the challenge,” Miller said. “That’s one of the reasons I came here – just so I can showcase my skill set. I still got some things to work on, but every day I’m just putting in the work, so when the first game comes, I’ll be ready to go.”