TEXANS CAN'T CATCH A BREAK

3 important takeaways from the Texans' heartbreaking loss to the Colts

Texans suffer another crushing loss. Photo by Getty Images.

Another week, another Texans loss and another fantastic way for them to lose. This team seems to have invented new and more heartbreaking ways to lose. Whether it's a fumbled snap or seemingly quitting against an inferior team, there's been a number of ways this team has found to lose. This time, it was a fumble after converting a 4th&5 to the Colts' 2-yard line down 27-20 with 19 seconds left. Close, but no cigar yet again.

Signs of improvement with the two-minute drill

One thing I need to continue to give them props on is the two-minute drill before halftime. Down 14-7 with 1:43 left and all three timeouts, the Texans weren't able to tie the game, but did manage to get a field goal with no time left on the clock. Too many times we've seen this team not only falter in these situations, but give their opponents a chance for a knockout blow. They did the same thing in their previous game against the Colts and their win against the Patriots. If they can start to do this at the end of these one score games, they can win more close games instead of losing them. That is the mark of a good team.

T.Y. Hilton kills the Texans again

Why does T.Y. Hilton continues to torch this team? It's not like the Texans don't know who he is or what he's capable of. But they continue to allow him to beat them when it counts. He only had four catches for 71 yards, but his 41-yard reception that led up to the two-minute warning in the fourth quarter ended up leading to the game winning touchdown. Up to that point, he was pretty much held in check. But plays like the one he made in that crucial situation broke the Texans' backs yet again. The way they saw an immediate issue with Bill O'Brien and got rid of him is the same way they need to treat defensive coordinator Anthony Weaver. Fire him now, let someone else take over, and see if things improve. Hell, it can't get any worse!

The Deshaun Watson debate that just won't go away

Tim Kelly is really trying to make a case for himself. The offensive coordinator has proven to make chicken salad out of chicken bleep since O'Brien's firing. Deshaun Watson had another great game with Kelly calling plays. All this behind a hapless offensive line and at a severe disadvantage at the skill positions. Watson went 33/41 for 373 yards and two touchdowns. He completed passes to eight different guys in this game. His two touchdowns went to two of his favorite targets over the last few games: one to Keke Coutee, the other to Chad Hansen. These guys are part of the reason I support the decision to continue to play Watson.

Playing or not playing Watson has been a hot topic. I believe playing him with the guys you're trying to see what you got in them is best for the immediate future of this team. You can't see what you really got in some of their receivers unless Watson is throwing them the ball. Playing AJ McCarron at quarterback won't give these guys a real shot at proving what they're capable of. That said, if you don't think any of these guys are worth building with or keeping around and you don't want to risk it, sit Watson. Moving forward, I'd like to see more guys involved on defense to see what they can give you. Take more risks with blitzes. On offense, use the spread and up-tempo style more often. This way, if the offense stalls, it'll force you to use more bodies on defense in order not to tire out guys. If the offense succeeds, it lets you know you have a style that works moving forward. What do you have to lose at this point?

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The media has mixed feelings about the James Harden trade. Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

James Harden was 100-percent exactly right earlier this week when he said the Houston Rockets were "just not good enough."

How could they be? Not when their moody superstar scorer, who makes about half a million dollars per game, shows up chubby, looking like a kielbasa about to explode in the microwave. Hey, some people eat when they're unhappy, it's a defense mechanism. In Harden's case, the only defense he's exhibited this season. At least he had a good excuse for missing pre-season training camp and alienating his teammates - he was busy partying with Cinnamon and Cherish in Atlanta and Vegas without a mask. Worst of all, he went into the tank his last four games in a Rockets uniform, standing around, arms folded, scoring fewer than 20 points each time, all Rockets losses. Fans in the front row were asking him to move, he was blocking their view of players who cared about winning. James Harden sabotaged his own team, a team that offered him $50 million a year to stay. Something that crazy could only happen in professional sports these days.

There's a saying that drives the American labor movement: "a fair day's wage for a fair day's work." It's the motto of the American Federation of Labor. The National Basketball Players Association is not a member. Harden's sulking on the court, cheating the Rockets and their fans, was unforgivable.

Harden, sitting out games while somehow being on the court, forced the Rockets to trade him - and quick - to Brooklyn. The trade, when you ignore the fine print and unindicted co-conspirators Cleveland and Indiana, sent Harden to Brooklyn in exchange for Caris LeVert (immediately flipped for Victor Oladipo), Jarrett Allen, three first-round draft picks and four swapped first-rounders. It's true, when you trade a superstar, you never get back equal value. The other team wins.

If it makes Rockets fans feel any better, the media in New York already has problems with their new problem child. I should say newest problem child. Kyrie Irving plays for the Nets.

"They (the Nets) gave up everybody! There's nothing left now. I just want to cry, It's awful," weeped WFAN Radio talk host Evan Roberts. For those who don't subscribe to weekly Arbitron ratings reports, WFAN is the most powerful, top-rated sports talk station in the Apple.

"You're leading down the road of doom. Harden and Durant could be gone in a year and a half. I'm not convinced this gives them a better chance to win a title. I'm living a nightmare again. They better freaking win."

Circle March 3 on your Rockets schedule. That's when the Brooklyn Nets, with their Big 3 of Kevin Durant, James Harden and possibly Kyrie Irving visit Toyota Center. I hear talk radio salivating over the record jeers that will cascade over Harden's name, although I'm not buying it. Fans don't think like the media does. I'm thinking that Rockets fans will welcome Harden back - one night only - with cheers.

Toyota Center public address announcer Matt Thomas: "Usually when former Rockets come to town for the first time since leaving, I give them a positive introduction. It's up to the fans how to react."

James Harden spent eight seasons with the Rockets. He is a spectacular player who watched other NBA players engineer trades so they could compete for a title. Harden didn't think the Rockets were good enough, and he's right. So he wanted out. We've all been there, a job we didn't like for a company we didn't like, for a boss we didn't respect. Harden wanting to be traded is understandable. How he went about it was deplorable. He hurt his co-workers.

Houston will make Harden pay for his disrespectful departure. He has an upscale restaurant set to open here. The name of the steakhouse will be "13." Harden's business partners may want to change that number ... before the restaurant's telephone number is disconnected. There are plenty of other restaurants in Houston. Rich people who can afford steakhouse prices hold grudges.

Rockets fans searching for a silver lining say, "We got two decent players and a whole bunch of precious first-round picks" for a malcontent who would rather be anywhere (except maybe Sacramento) than Houston." Yes, a bunch of first-round picks does bode well for the future. Anywhere, except maybe Houston.

Houston's draft war room isn't the most successful operation in the NBA. Over the past decade prior to 2000, under the direction of general manager Daryl Morey, the Rockets made 16 draft picks. Not one of them is still in a Rockets uniform, many of them have sought employment outside of America, some outside of basketball. Among their first-round whiffs: Nikola Mirotic, Terrence Jones, Sam Dekker - all out of the league. Best of all, Royce White, who played three whole games in his NBA career and finished with a scoring average of 0.00 points per game.

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