26-Year-Old Linebacker – Houston Texans
2013 Fantasy Football Outlook
Cushing would perhaps rank higher were he not returning from an ACL tear that occurred in Week 5 last year. He's a Pro Bowl-caliber talent when healthy and makes an impact in the tackle, sack and inte...
Brian Cushing Contract Information:
Signed a six-year extension with the Texans in September of 2013.
Cushing (knee) is off crutches and began weight-bearing exercises Tuesday, the Texans' official site
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|Tackles||Defensive Stats||Fumbles||Kick Ret||Punt Ret|
|2013 Proj||26||HOU||Subscribe now to see our 2013 projections for Brian Cushing|
Age is determined on September 1st of each season.
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A blank stat line is used above whenever a player was not on the field for any plays in the game that week.
Brian Cushing: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
Exclusive Fantasy Analysis (FREE PREVIEW)Cushing was carted off the field in Sunday's game, but did not tear the same ACL as last year. The broken leg and LCL are serious injuries that will end his season, but are considered slightly less precarious in rehab. Daryl Sharpton could see the starts at Cushing's inside linebacker position the rest of this season.
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Cushing is a better on-field player than IDP at this point, so don’t expect his production to return to his rookie-year level, when he totaled 133 tackles (86 solo), four sacks and four interceptions. This is due to Houston’s clock-eating offense and that the Texans defense does a good job of getting off the field. That said, Cushing’s playmaking abilities shine through, as he finished last year with 114 stops (76 solo), four sacks and two interceptions. The selection of outside linebacker Whitney Mercilus in the first round of the draft ensures Houston will keep Cushing exclusively on the inside, where most of the tackle opportunities are.
Cushing's 2010 season was badly compromised by his four-game suspension for alleged illegal PED use, but he should be back to posting big numbers in 2011. Houston is switching to a 3-4 defense despite a potential lack of the necessary personnel on the defensive line, meaning Cushing and his fellow linebackers could see more tackle opportunities than usual if runners are allowed to breeze past the line of scrimmage. His value is further aided by the fact that he's expected to work occasionally as a pass rusher, meaning he'll have a chance to add a decent sack total to what should be standout tackle production. Considering his size/speed/strength combination, Cushing should be able to thrive both on the inside and out, and he's a good IDP target at linebacker as a result.
Cushing would rank much higher on this list based on his rookie season alone — he racked up 134 tackles, five sacks and four interceptions and was named Defensive Rookie of the Year by the AP. But this spring, we learned that Cushing failed a drug test during that campaign and will sit out the first four games of 2010 for violating the NFL’s PED policy. We’ll leave the moralizing about his transgression to the Peter Kings of the world and skip to the numbers, which tell us that 12 games worth of Cushing — plus four games of replacement-level production — should still be a better IDP option than a full season of most linebackers out there.
Cushing will start at strongside linebacker, which is typically Mario Williams' side. With linemen focusing on Williams so much, there may be a few sack opportunities for Cushing.