The Houston Texans had 95% attendance throughout their offseason workouts.
If one man could account for the other five percent missing, it would have to be left tackle Laremy Tunsil, who did not attend any of the club’s organized team activities.
Coach Lovie Smith stressed that the OTAs were voluntary, and that the only workouts that counted were mandatory minicamp.
Tunsil was present at the Texans’ minicamp, and Smith was pleased to have the two-time Pro Bowler at the facilities.
“It was good to see him get back out on the football field,” Smith told reporters at Houston Methodist Training Center. “That was a final piece of this puzzle that we’re putting together. Great work.”
Although Tunsil wasn’t present at team facilities throughout the offseason program, he was in contact with Smith.
“We’ve been communicating with him throughout, but it was good to see one of your best football players, one of the best offensive tackles in football,” Smith said. “You add him to our team, we’re a better football team. It’s as simple as that. It’s voluntary work in the offseason for most of this.”
Smith admitted that he wanted Tunsil at practice everyday throughout the spring, but also acknowledged the reality that such expectations don’t always manifest in the NFL.
“In an ideal work, yeah, I wanted Laremy to be here every day,” said Smith. “But sometimes guys aren’t here. When they come here, we’re not going to make him change his last name or anything like that. We’re going to let him keep the same number, and he’s going to help us win a lot of games this year.”
Tunsil reworked his contract to stay with the Texans through the 2023 season. The Texans shored up their interior offensive line in the draft with the selection of Texas A&M Kenyon Green, who has some flexibility to play tackle in a pinch.