The Texans have a medical plan for rookie tight end Teagan Quitoriano: give him time to get fully healthy.
The Texans are expected to place the fifth-round draft pick from Oregon State on short-term injured reserve to allow him to recover from a lingering knee injury that necessitates him icing his knee after practices and games, according to a league source.
The Texans cut veteran blocking tight end Antony Auclair, who's making a sound recovery from a sprained right knee suffered at the start of training camp, but the door is not closed on him potentially returning. The Texans currently have just two healthy tight ends on the 53-man roster: starter Pharaoh Brown and second-year backup Brevin Jordan.
The Texans may sign former University of Houston tight end Seth Green to their practice squad if he clears waivers Tuesday, per a league source.
When he's healthy, the Texans like Quitorian's upside.
He scored his first NFL touchdown against the Los Angeles Rams in a preseason game.
Quoitoriano caught a six-yard touchdown pass from backup quarterback Kyle Allen as Allen executed a play-action fake to running back Royce Freeman and rolled to his right to connect with Quitoriano.
Quitoriano, 22, did the rest, escaping a tackle attempt to get into the end zone during a 24-20 preseason win against the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium.
"It was an awesome feeling," Quitoriano said after the game. "It was like all the work you put in growing up and everything kind of comes to a point. It didn't feel as good as getting that win, though. At the end of the day, getting that win is the ultimate goal.
"It was a great play, it was a great play call and a great throw from Kyle. I just got to get in there. It was a good feeling."
An honorable-mention All-Pac-12 selection in 2020 when he caught 14 passes for 185 yards and one touchdown, Quitoriano caught 19 passes for 214 yards and three touchdowns last season.
He missed some time at training camp and during the offseason with the knee injury.
"I'm just trying to stack days and stack reps," Quitoriano said. "I'm quite a few reps behind a lot of the guys here. I feel great. It's been great to get in the room with a bunch of great tight ends and great people and soak up as much as you can."
At 6-foot-6, 258 pounds, Quitoriano has outstanding size. He started as a true freshman for the Beavers. He was an all-state football and basketball selection in Salem, Oregon. He originally committed to Oregon before accepting a scholarship to Oregon State.
"I'm a well-rounded tight end," Quitoriano said. "I'm glad that Houston took a chance on me. That's all I wanted: was to get my foot in the door. Now I'm just going to try to kick it down."
Before the draft, Quitoriano met on Zoom multiple times with Texans offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton and tight ends coach Tim Berbenich.
"They liked the way I played," Quitoriano said. "They like the way I've progressed in the run game. They have a lot of ideas and ways that they want to use me as a player. I just can't wait to help the franchise win games."
Aaron Wilson is a Pro Football Network reporter and analyst and a contributor to Sports Talk 790.