Smith, a Pro Bowler last season, is a vital part of the team’s offensive line. He banged knees with a teammate last week, and that may have aggravated a previous injury (he had a knee scope after the conclusion of the season).
Backup guard Ben Jones has temporarily been promoted to the starting position. Jones, drafted in the fourth round of the 2012 NFL Draft out of Georgia, is not exactly an ideal replacement for Smith. He was drafted as a center, and he struggled when he was forced into the starting job at right guard last season.
Smith’s absence would be a serious blow to the team, and the Texans can only hope that he isn’t out for an extended period of time.