The Texans tied with the Colts in a wild week one matchup, but after blowing a massive lead, did Houston really avoid a loss?
There aren’t a whole lot of words to describe how week one went for the Texans, with a bizarre game that ended in a tie with the Indianapolis Colts. There was good, there was bad, and there was a head-scratching ending, but everything that happened is worth analyzing. Let’s dive in.
There is going to be discussion around whatever items I put here, as it never feels like there is enough good in a game that doesn’t end in a win. However, hold your judgments until I get through all the items and you might see why it’s not too late for the Texans to still have a good season ahead of us.
If you expected me to start anywhere other than with the newest addition to the Texans roster, you must have missed the first half of the game. Howard and Mills had a glowing connection in the red zone, hauling in two touchdowns in the first quarter. While the rest of his stat line doesn’t jump off the page, his early chemistry with Mills leaves hope that the original grade for the TE room may have been entirely too low.
Another off-season addition made by Texans GM, Nick Caserio, is looking to be a game-changer for the defensive line. Jerry Hughes was in the backfield multiple times, even getting a strip-sack on Matt Ryan. His best play of the game came on a nice jump interception off the line that was intended for Jonathan Taylor. If he continues his streak of taking the ball away, he should have a great year on the Texans and help turn the tide of several games.
This is the part of the game that most fans will be talking about all week, but that won’t prevent me from mentioning it here. There was some bad that came from the game, and it’s important to identify the issues that occurred and look for them to be fixed as the season continues.
A concern that exists in many fans’ minds is how the play-calling shifted when the Texans were holding a substantial 17-point lead. They went from a dynamic, sling-the-rock style offense to a predictable, multi-run offense that led to sequential three-and-outs. Mixed with the questionable call that lead to the tie in overtime, it’s safe to say that the Texans need to play to win in next week’s match-up against the Seahawks.
Stopping The Stars
The two key Colts who gashed the Texans’ defense play after play are the same two everyone would have predicted before the game. Michael Pittman Jr. and Jonathan Taylor both put on a clinic against the defense on every drive and were instrumental in the Colts’ comeback. If the Texans can’t gameplan better as the season goes on, expect to continue to see this point pop up on these lists.
So the Texans start the season 0-0-1, that’s less than ideal. It is important to note that the Texans were the largest underdogs heading into week one of the NFL. The mere fact that they pulled off the tie should bring enough buzz inside the fanbase to float the franchise to week two. Additionally, many of the rookies that started today will only get better as the season goes on.
Derek Stingley had some very good moments in today’s game, but it would have been unrealistic to expect him to completely lockdown the emerging star of MPJ. Jalen Pitre also had a solid first game, although he was a few inches off of some great plays. Dameon Pierce had a pretty middling game, but that was due in part to the strange fascination with Rex Burkhead down the stretch of the game. Kenyon Green didn’t start today, but there is hope that he eventually assumes that position on the starting line.
Look forward to a good game against the Broncos next Sunday!
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