Wide receiver Andre Johnson injures groin

Andre Johnson suffered a groin injury during the morning practice. He underwent an MRI Sunday and called it a “minor strain” when talking with reporters Sunday afternoon. “It just tightened up on me,” Johnson said. “I had hit the ground pretty hard stretching out for a ball, and it just tightened up.”

Johnson said he expects to miss about a week of practice. “Everybody’s just saying just be smart about it," he said. "You don’t want to rush in, come back out here and have something happen again. We’ll be smart about it and just see what happens.”

With Johnson out, wide receiver Lestar Jean was working opposite of Kevin Walter with the first team offense. Johnson’s absence also means more reps for rookies DeVier Posey and Keshawn Martin.

“[Johnson] is a guy we need to get out here and get working, him and Matt [Schaub], and he knows that,” coach Gary Kubiak said. “We’ve got to be smart here and get him to wherever that point is. Is it next week, or whatever, but we just need to get to work and get ready for the season.”

Quick Hits

  • More injury news: Linebacker Darryl Sharpton is dealing with a “hip issue,” according to Kubiak. Sharpton is still recovering from a quadriceps injury that has him on the PUP list, but he had a setback with his rehab. Cornerback Kareem Jackson is dealing with a minor left hamstring injury. Jackson said he is taking it easy, but it’s “nothing to be worried about.”
  • Gary Kubiak said Derek Newton is pushing Rashad Butler at right tackle. “[Newton] is right there breathing down his neck,” Kubiak said. “They are splitting reps. It’s going to be a good battle.”
  • Kubiak has liked what he has seen from rookie outside linebacker Whitney Mercilus, the team’s first-round pick. “He’s got the speed and all those things that we know that he has,” Kubiak said. “Now, we’ll see the competitive nature. We put the pads on starting tomorrow, so that’s what we need to see next.”
  • Jean is working with the first-team offense in Johnson’s absence, despite the fact that he doesn’t have an NFL reception. “But that’s why we’re here, that’s why we play the game,” Jean said. “Everybody had to get their first NFL catch, their first NFL touchdown. That’s part of the game.”
  • Basketball Hall of Famer David Robinson and his son took in the morning practice. “My son is a football player," Robinson said. "So I’m trying to get him some exposure to excellence, get him to see what it takes to be at this level, and this was certainly an eye-opening day for him watching how these receivers and these d-backs go at it and how the game is played so tight.”
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