Hopkins Ends Holdout, Checks In To Texans Camp
After a brief holdout, Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins was back to work on Monday catching passes from quarterback Brock Osweiler.
"I wasn't trying to send a message or anything like that," Hopkins said. "I was doing what I felt was best for me and my family."
Hopkins started training camp on the reserve/did not report list after failing to report to the team's facility by midnight on Friday.
On Sunday, Hopkins missed the first practice but then hours later the Texans announced his reassignment to the active list, ending his brief holdout.
"I play football for a living. That's my job, that's what I love doing," Hopkins said. "I love coming out here being with my teammates. Just have to keep working. I know it will come. I'm not rushing it. I know it will happen one day."
As far as getting a new contract, Hopkins said he leaves that all up to his agent and the Texans' front office.
Hopkins is under contract for this season for a $1 million base salary and a $7.915 million base salary for 2017.
"I really don't have thoughts on that," Hopkins said about having a goal of being a long-term Texan. "I can only control what happens day to day and that's me coming out here and doing my job to the best I can."
In his first practice back with the team it didn't take long for Hopkins to look like the Pro Bowl wide receiver. On the first play in 1-on-1 drills, Hopkins made a highlight-reel touchdown catch, beating Jonathan Joseph on a pass from Osweiler.
"It was great, it's getting better. From where we started to where we are now we came a long way," Hopkins said about working with Osweiler.
"Caught a couple touchdowns out here. All the guys are out here working and I'm happy that I can be out here to push them."
Along with making his usual catches, Hopkins was leading the wide receiving group, including helping out the rookies.
"Anytime you have the leader of that group out there no question it's important," Texans coach Bill O'Brien said.
"You can see out there today he's talking to (Will) Fuller, talking to Braxton (Miller) and Wendell Williams about different things. Different things in the offense, how to line up, how we run certain drills.
"Anytime you have that presence that's something that's really good for your team."
For Fuller, who was drafted in the first round by the Texans in April from Notre Dame, leaning on the veterans for advice is key and he is taking it all in.
"It's just fun to be playing with someone of that caliber," Fuller said. "It's great to have him."