Signs the line is about to get right and Mercilus will stay hot off the edge

Could the offensive line be settling in for Texans?

A little Texans six pack for you on this Friday. The Texans play the Falcons on Sunday at NRG stadium.

Do your eyes deceive you?

Lookie there! The Texans are 8th overall in the advanced metric. The stats don't match the eye test right now though.

The Texans are still 31st in QB Sacked Percentage according to TeamRankings.com.

Not every hit or sack is created equal, and it isn't like Watson gets crushed every time someone gets to him. But, they add up. He still takes too many hits. There are positives though and there is a chance this improves.

ESPN's stats have Tytus Howard as the second-best tackle in football in the above metric. They have guard Max Scharping fourth in the same metric. Greg Mancz will not be back at right guard with his concussion. Zach Fulton will be back at right guard.

Laremy Tunsil has been extremely solid at left tackle since the first game as well.

There is hope the Texans figure this offensive line situation out. Atlanta is a full sack worse per game than last year's team and last year's team was putrid in rushing the passer. If the Texans can't keep Watson upright against Atlanta they may never keep him clean.

October encore?

Whitney Mercilus just came off his best four-game stretch of his entire career. The closest thing to what he did in September is the end of 2015 where he had five and a half sacks but certainly not as many forced fumbles and no interception.

This is what people thought Jadeveon Clowney could do on a regular basis. Mercilus is playing the right position and he has worked almost everyone he has come up against. This week Jake Matthews is the opponent for Mercilus. The son of Oilers legend Bruce Matthews has been decent this season checking in about average on the season according to Pro Football Foucs. He's allowed two sacks and 10 total hurries.

Mercilus is fifth in the NFL with five sacks. He has the most pass rushing snaps from the right side of a defense. This could be a solid opportunity to keep his hot start going.

Texans to honor McNair

The man who brought football back to Houston will be honored at halftime of Sunday's game. Robert C. McNair will see his name up in the Ring of Honor next to Andre Johnson. McNair has thankfully been remembered much better than some of the things he made headlines for in his final year or so.

McNair's actions spoke louder than his words and his actions said he loved Houston and his football team. It wasn't always easy for fans to get along with his patience as an owner, but there is no doubt the city of Houston is a much better place thanks to McNair.

Keke Coutee's chance to shine

Just three catches on seven targets for 18 yards. Not ideal for a player who was ready to breakout after a stop and start season last year. Coutee hasn't quite found his groove with Deshaun Watson and the time missed could be factoring into the issues.

With Kenny Stills recovering from some leg injuries Coutee could take over some of the workload at wideout. If he got clicking, and then Stills returned, the offense would be incredible. It will be interesting to see how the Texans account for Stills' absence. He and Coutee are different players so there has to be some small adjustment at least if Stills can't go.

New old guy on the block

He might be 38 but Mike Adams has gotten better with age. In fact, his best seasons came after the age of 33. It is hard to determine exactly what his role will be as the team's top three safeties are all healthy right now. It is never a bad idea to bring in reinforcements when the Falcons, Chiefs, and T.Y. Hilton coming up the next three weeks.

And I was all like Julioooooo haha

The above video was awesome until you realize Malcolm Butler and the Titans defense shutdown Julio Jones and ended his touchdown streak. Alas, he is still a monster scoring 12 touchdowns in his last 13 games and totaling up 1,182 yards.

I have no idea how the Texans plan to slow down Julio Jones. He might be too fast for Johnathan Joseph and he might be too experienced for Lonnie Johnson. Not to mention, Mohamed Sanu and Calvin Ridley are dangerous as well. Oh, and Austin Hooper can crush from the tight end spot.

This will be one of the toughest games all season for the secondary. If Romeo Crennel can't scheme something up the Texans could find themselves needing to win a shootout on Sunday.

Oh and if you don't get the reference in the title click here.

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This week, the NASCAR Cup Series heads for the high banks of Michigan for the Firekeepers Casino 400. This will be NASCAR's second doubleheader of the season as they continue to draw closer and closer to the playoffs. Earlier in the summer, NASCAR announced the final races before the playoffs and in those number of races they announced that they will be running two doubleheaders. One this Saturday and Sunday at Michigan and another in a few weeks at Dover. We saw a double feature race earlier this year at Pocono, so it will be interesting to see here in a different set of circumstances at Michigan. This track is a two and half mile oval that races similarly to a track like Auto Club as they both have plenty of grooves and lanes to run on. With this aero package it should be interesting to see if the racing is similar to last year's.

It was announced this week that NASCAR would unveil their last batch of races for the remainder of 2020 and for the most part the season remains pretty much the same. Richmond will get back one of it's races that was cancelled and Phoenix Raceway will remain the season finale. NASCAR had made it clear that they were hoping to keep their playoff races intact and luckily they were able to. We will still get to see Martinsville decide who gets to race in the final four, and we will still see Bristol in the playoffs as well. The only question that remains now is will these races have fans? I have a feeling that at tracks like Las Vegas we will see no fans but on tracks like Texas and Bristol or Richmond, I have a feeling they will be much more lenient. Only time will tell as everything remains fluid.

It was announced on Thursday that Erik Jones will not return to the #20 car for Joe Gibbs in 2021. This clears a path for the next Gibbs driver in the pipeline, Christopher Bell. The writing had been on the wall for a while as Toyota and Joe Gibbs had too many drivers and not enough seats to fit all of them. The same thing happened back in 2017 when it was announced that Erik Jones would be replacing Matt Kenseth in the same car. While I hate to see Jones lose his ride, I think it will only be temporary as there are a bunch of good rides available. Besides, you have to feel as if he is now the favorite to replace Jimmie Johnson next season after Brad Keselowski announced he will be back at Penske next season.

Another headline that was announced this week was the changes that will be made to how the field will start at the Daytona Roval. NASCAR also announced Thursday that they would use weighted metrics to decide who starts on the front-row. The formula will consist of three criteria including, finishing position in the previous race, position in owner points, and fastest lap time in the race. None of this makes any sense to the average viewer. In fact, most of the drivers I would imagine don't understand it either. There were probably better ways of doing this including actual practice and qualifying. I can understand that NASCAR is trying to do everything in their power to make sure drivers are limited at the racetrack, but this is becoming more and more unnecessary by the week.

As I mentioned earlier, Erik Jones will be looking for a ride next season. What better way to prove you belong than by winning races and that's what I predict he will do this weekend at Michigan. This is a track that is special to him considering he is a native Michigander. While he hasn't had the best finishes here over the past few years, I will say he has been running well. Despite a lackluster 24th place finish at New Hampshire, before that he had rattled off back-to-back top tens with a fifth at Texas and a sixth at Kansas. I look for him to get back in the grove and get his third career win and leave a big impression on all the teams looking for a driver next season. Look for Erik Jones to win one of the races this weekend.

The other driver I have winning this weekend is Joey Logano. On Saturday, Logano will roll off first to begin the weekend. This is a track where Joey has been stellar at as well. He has won here four times including back in 2013 in a race that put Logano back on the map and began his reign at Penske. I look for him to get win #4 this weekend at Michigan.

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