Akins enters his third season as a 28-year-old former baseball player. He caught 36-of-55 targets for 418 yards and two scores, but there are reasons to believe that he may make a leap in his third year. He led all Houston tight ends in routes run (390) and ran the 10th most routes among all tight ends last year. Given his snap rate (61%), it’s an indicator that the team views him mainly as a receiver. He was fourth among tight ends in yards after the catch per reception and third among tight ends in average YAC above expectations, per NFL’s Next Gen Stats. With the loss of DeAndre Hopkins, Akins should play a larger role in the passing game, especially with Darren Fells another year older. Akins could see competition from second-year player Kahale Warring, but after a lost-rookie season it’s doubtful that he’ll be able to eat into Akins’ snaps.