The Houston Texans have a Super Bowl caliber defense but their offensive problems would make it one hell of a challenge to win it all in a Pop Warner league.
While it’s hard to understand how the team could have an even worse quarterback situation than last year after the organization gave an obscene contract to a clumsy, inaccurate stork Brock Osweiler, that seems to be the case.
The Texans divested themselves of Osweiler but it was largely a salary cap move that many expected was being done to land oft-injured Dallas Cowboys star Tony Romo. Well, the team was able to dump Osweiler and his contract but Romo got tired of being jerked around by Jerry Jones and chose to simply retire and take a TV job.
With Romo’s retirement, Houston had little option but to trade up in the draft in order to snag former Clemson quarterback DeShaun Watson who may be forced to step right into the lineup. Watson had a stellar college career and was able to beat Alabama in last year’s NCAA title game but asking him to do likewise right off the bat is a tall order. Don’t expect Watson to be the answer – at least not yet.
But it is what it is, the other option is Tom Savage who doesn’t exactly conjure visions of Joe Montana let alone Brock Osweiler.
With the quarterback position in flux, it will be up to the running game to hold down the fort until Watson is able to develop. Lamar Miller had a decent season last year with 1,073 yards and Houston drafted Texas Longhorn D’Onta Foreman in the third round. However, a recent bust for marijuana and possession of a firearm could end up with the rookie being suspended and there’s little behind Miller.
The Texans have two game-breaking wide receivers in DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller but they are only going to be as good as who is throwing the ball.
The bright side in Houston is that the team had the number one ranked defense in the NFL last year and that was without pass rusher extraordinaire J.J. Watt who was injured early and missed the majority of the season. Watt should be healthy again this year and will team with Jadeveon Clowney to terrorize opposing quarterbacks.
Had Houston had even a mediocre quarterback in 2016, they may have been able to bushwhack a flat New England Patriots team in the playoffs but Osweiler couldn’t get out of his own way.
Can Houston make a run solely on their defense? It is that good and the 2015 Denver Broncos managed to overcome lousy quarterbacking from Osweiler and a broken down Peyton Manning to win a Super Bowl so it can be done.
The chances though aren’t good for coach Bill O’Brien’s team who will likely have to settle for the AFC South title unless Watson is able to conjure his Clemson magic.
So, what does it all mean?
The best that Houston can expect with their offensive issues is winning the weakest division in the football which isn’t a given considering that Tennessee is coming on strong.