Hopkins is learning how to study

Houston Texans rookie receiver DeAndre Hopkins has a note taped to the inside of his locker from his college head coach, Clemson's Dabo Swinney.

It's a reminder from Swinney of Hopkins' promise to get his degree from Clemson. He's close, though he left after his junior year and it's something he definitely plans to do. Hopkins told me it's motivating.

Learning has been especially important for the Texans' first-round draft pick lately. He's getting better in practice and in the classroom.

"He walked in and got a game plan this Wednesday and it didn’t scare the heck out of him like it did the week before," Texans coach Gary Kubiak said.

I relayed the quote to Hopkins for his reaction.

"I think that's true," he said. "The jitters that I had, there was a lot of stuff coming at me. My first NFL game plan. They put a bunch of plays in front of you. You have to study almost overnight. It's not like you have a week to know what's going in the game plan. It's a couple days. I was just trying to cram everything in and I really didn't know how to study. This week and with the help of Andre I kind of graduted into a better study habit."

Veteran Andre Johnson taught Hopkins that neat note taking would help him process all the information thrown at him.

"I'm not the biggest note taker," Hopkins said. "But little key words helps me out and stuff."

Even with the inundation of information, Hopkins had a solid second half for the Texans, catching four passes for 66 yards as he got more comfortable on Monday night. The team knew it wouldn't be too big for him -- he had a habit in college of shining in big moments.

This will all get easier for him as the weeks progress and as it does Hopkins will only get better.