Texans RB David Johnson anticipating more carries after Mark Ingram trade

The Houston Texans thinned out their backfield this week, trading Mark Ingram to New Orleans. That opens the door for more carries for Phillip Lindsay and David Johnson.

Ingram led the Texans with 92 carries for 294 yards through seven games as the starter. While Lindsay projects to take over the early-down work, Johnson said Thursday he's been preparing to get more carries the rest of the season.

"Obviously, when we lose Mark to a different team, I've got to prepare to run the ball more," Johnson said Thursday, via the team's official transcript. "I was already used as a third-down and as a receiving back, but now it's just getting more carries."

Johnson has only carried 27 times this season for 104 yards -- Lindsay has seen 38 totes for 97 yards and a TD. However, he's seen the lion's share of the pass-catching targets out of the backfield. Through seven games, Johnson has 19 catches on 24 targets for 154 yards and a TD. Ingram and Lindsay combined for 10 catches on 13 targets for 61 yards and a score over that same span.

We expect Lindsay to be the biggest beneficiary of the Ingram trade, but Johnson should see more running opportunities in addition to remaining the third-down back. Scottie Phillips could also see a few snaps as the Texans test out their younger players as the season progresses. Do-it-all veteran Rex Burkhead, who has played sparingly, could also see reps if healthy.

The Texans entered the season with four veteran running backs, all on one-year contracts -- Ingram, Lindsay, Johnson, Burkhead. At least one of them seemed bound to get traded out of town. That leaves the main two more opportunities to impress before hitting the open market again -- unless they too are traded before the Nov. 2 deadline.

"It's just part of the business," Johnson said of the Ingram trade. "That's how I felt. Especially with the trade deadline coming up, and a lot of injuries going on to the running backs as a whole in the league. That's how I felt, it's part of the business."

Houston hosts the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday.

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