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Arian Foster a risky fantasy pick with back, calf injuries

Arian FosterArian Foster has been one of the best running backs in football the past three seasons and one of the most productive players in fantasy football during that span. For the third year in a row, he enters the season as a somewhat risky fantasy football pick because of injuries. This time I think the concerns are more serious than usual.

Foster is dealing with back and calf injuries and has not practiced during training camp. He continues to miss timetables given by head coach Gary Kubiak, who has consistently expected the running back to practice. Though the calf issue does not appear to be serious, the back problem is a real concern.

Kubiak told reporters during a news conference on Sunday that Foster will not be at practice on Monday because he needs time after getting injections for his back. Kubiak said the pain from the back has migrated down to Foster’s legs, which is a common issue for those who have nerve problems.

Kubiak’s comments led Houston Chronicle Texans writer John McClain to write that he would be worried about Foster’s status for the season opener.

Foster has been one of the most overworked backs in football the past three years. He had 393 touches in 2010 (327 rushes, 66 receptions); 390 touches in 2011 including playoffs (329 rushes, 61 receptions); and he had an absurd 460 touches in 2012 including playoffs (405 rushes, 55 receptions). There aren’t many players who touched the ball as often as he has the past three years and not experienced a setback. I love his talent, but I have serious concerns about his workload taking its toll.

H/T Rotoworld

Arian Foster ‘refocused and rededicated,’ wants to have a bounce-back season

Arian-Foster-TexansHouston Texans running back Arian Foster rushed for 1,424 yards and scored 15 rushing touchdowns last season. He added another 217 yards and two touchdowns receiving. Apparently it was not enough.

Foster’s receiving numbers were down from years past and his 4.1 yards per carry average was the lowest of his career, but almost anyone would tell you he had a fantastic year. Despite that, the 26-year-old is looking to “bounce back” in 2013.

“I’ve just been relaxing,” Foster told FOX Sports Southwest’s Patti Smith on Saturday, via the Houston Texans’ official website. “I’ve just been relaxing and working really hard. I think this has probably (been) one of my most intense training offseasons I’ve had since I’ve been in the NFL. I just want to bounce back. I didn’t feel like I had the best season last year.”

By the way, Foster made his third consecutive Pro Bowl last year. He also led the league in total touchdowns with 17. Texans fans must love his lack of satisfaction.

“I just didn’t feel like I was at my best, and it’s gonna change this year,” he said. “(I’ve) just refocused and rededicated myself to another level, and hopefully it shows. I’m not traveling. I’m not doing a lot. I’m here in Houston and I’m training.”

If you remember, Foster also quit Twitter at the beginning of the month. That was a disappointment since he was one of the few NFL players who actually provided insightful thoughts and used Twitter for awesome reasons, but not tweeting fits in with his offseason approach. After all, the last thing he wants to do is have another disappointing season like the 1,424 rushing yards he had last year.

Arian Foster says he is going to quit Twitter in a week

The world of Twitter as it pertains to professional athletes could be getting a bit dumber in the near future. On Monday, Houston Texans running back Arian Foster announced in a series of tweets that he is planning to leave Twitter.

arian fosterTo this point, Foster has not really provided any type of explanation as to why he has decided to call it quits. If he does indeed go through with it, he will leave behind a lot of disappointed followers — us included.

In an era where athletes seem to constantly get themselves into trouble by saying stupid and insensitive things on Twitter, Foster uses it as a medium for conveying intelligent thoughts and connecting with fans. He has been known to find clever ways to give away free tickets and even makes a hilarious joke every now and then. He also uses his account to find unique ways of thanking fans for their support.

For every Foster we have on Twitter, it seems like there are 20 athletes like this guy who have no business tweeting. Hopefully Foster changes his mind.

Arian Foster using Dan Shaughnessy’s Texans-bashing column as motivation

arian fosterArian Foster is using the disparaging words of a sports writer to motivate him for Sunday’s playoff game at New England.

A day after the Houston Texans beat the Cincinnati Bengals 19-13 to advance to the divisional round of the playoffs, Dan Shaughnessy wrote a column for The Boston Globe that bashes the Texans.

Shaughnessy calls the Texans “frauds” and says Sunday’s game will be a “layup” for the Patriots. Here are the first three paragraphs from his column:

The 2012-13 New England Patriots just became the first team in NFL history to get back-to-back byes before advancing to the conference championship game.

Could this get any easier?

I mean, seriously? The planets are aligned and the tomato cans are in place. The fraudulent Houston Texans are the only team standing between the New England Patriots and a trip to the AFC Championship game. All the Patriots have to do is beat the terrible Texans. One week from today. At Gillette Stadium.

You can read the entire column here, though that gives you the gist of it.

Those first three paragraphs apparently caught the eye of Foster, because the Texans star running back has made it his temporary Twitter avatar.

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Chuck Pagano dances in locker room after win (Video)

chuck-pagano-dancingChuck Pagano returned to the Colts sideline for the first time since being diagnosed with leukemia three months ago. The first-year head coach witnessed his team beat the Houston Texans 28-16 in Week 17 to improve to 11-5. After an emotional win, Pagano decided to break it down in the team’s locker room by showing off his best dance moves. He even locked arms with owner Jim Irsay and the two did a dance together at one point.

Pagano is so well regarded across the league, he was even recognized by an opponent. Texans running back Arian Foster gave a respect tap and bow to a “Chuckstrong” sign in the end zone after scoring a touchdown:

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Arian Foster receives get well letter from a young fan, makes it his Twitter avatar

Arian-Foster-get-well-letter

Arian Foster is expected to start for the Houston Texans against the Indianapolis Colts this weekend after leaving the team’s loss to the Minnesota Vikings in the third quarter last Sunday with an irregular heartbeat. Foster’s exit from that game was merely a precaution. He passed a series of tests on Monday, but that didn’t stop a young fan from being concerned about him.

The photo you see above was shared by a Twitter user who said his daughter wanted to write a get well letter to Foster because she was worried about him and his heart. Foster retweeted it and thanked the young lady for the love, and he even appreciated it so much that he made it his Twitter avatar.

Foster finding the letter and putting it on display is yet another reason why he’s one of the best players in the NFL to follow on Twitter. He finds creative ways to give tickets away and even makes the occasional hilarious joke. Most importantly, he legitimately seems to care about his fans. In this era of pro sports, that’s an extremely rare quality.

Arian Foster, Brooks Reed reportedly expected to start against Colts

Arian Foster and Brooks Reed are both expected to start in Houston’s Week 17 contest against the Indianapolis Colts despite their medical issues, the Houston Chronicle reports.

Foster left Sunday’s 23-6 Week 16 loss to Minnesota in the third quarter with an irregular heartbeat. Though doctors said he could have returned to the game, coach Gary Kubiak kept the running back out as a precaution. Foster underwent testing on Monday.

“Just to be sure but everything has been positive and we’re expecting him to be back,” Kubiak said via the Chronicle.

Foster tweeted earlier in the day that everything was back to normal:

Knowing Foster, it’s a surprise he thanked his Twitter followers for their concern instead of ripping them like he has in the past.

In addition to Foster, Reed is also expected to start next week despite leaving the Vikings game with an aggravated groin.

“Brooks got sore, which we expected,” Kubiak said. “We went into the game expecting to play him a certain amount of plays. We knew he would get sore. There was probably some scar tissue-type stuff that he was going to have to go through, but there were no setbacks.”

The 12-3 Texans have already clinched the AFC South, but they’re battling for playoff seeding. They visit the 10-5 Colts on Sunday.