CODY STOOTS/PRO FOOTBALL FOCUS

Former Texan Swearinger stands out on average Washington team

D.J. Swearinger is a much different player than the one fans saw in Houston. Todd Olszewski/Getty Images

Pro Football Focus grades each individual player's performance and assigns them a grade. All 32 teams use Pro Football Focus. 

Usually each week we will take a look at some of the good and bad from the Texans and a look at the upcoming opponent as well. With the bye week last week we will we look at Washington players. They also do great fantasy analysis and draft coverage as well. Stats are for the previous game unless otherwise noted. You can join Pro Football Focus here

Tony Bergstrom - 31.8 pass blocking grade

The former Texans offensive lineman was the only offensive lineman to allow a pressure or a sack against the Buccaneers for the Redskins. He has played center and left guard for Washington this season and not graded out particularly well in any of the games at any of the positions. A career journeyman lineman he blocked well in the rushing game pretty well against Tampa Bay. Considering how well the Texans interior has played and how often Jadeveon Clowney rushes inside this could be a spot the Texans could exploit. 

D.J. Swearinger - 87.7 season defense grade

Another former Texans player but he has had a long track record of success with Washington. Swearinger is the fifth best defensive back in the NFL according to Pro Football Focus when accounting for playing more than 50 percent of his team's snaps. He is playing very well and has now for a couple of years. He is playing the best coverage of his career as well. He is a far cry from the one-trick pony he was when the Texans first had him on the team. He's a leader on the defense and a player Deshaun Watson and company will have to watch out for on Sunday. 

Ryan Kerrigan - 72.2 season pass rush grade

Washington is about average when it comes to getting after the passers, just a couple of sacks ahead of the Texans. Kerrigan is the consistent force for the team in the pass rush though. J.J. Watt's fellow draft class member has a sack in four straight games and is the most consistent player Washington has in their front seven in getting after the quarterback. Though he hasn't graded out great, the Texans need to be aware where the former Purdue product lines up. 

Alex Smith - 70.3 season passing grade

Smith is about the 23rd best quarterback as far as passing goes according to the grades. He is a high-level game manager for Washington that on any given day can still be a dangerous threat. He is about average below in almost everything he does with the exception of interceptions. He doesn't throw a lot of interceptions. He throws the deep ball poorly and is one of the league's worst under pressure. There's just not a ton here besides a savvy veteran who gets his team in the right play and doesn't make mistakes.

As always, you can join Pro Football Focus here

Most Popular

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome

Listen Live

Houston is back in the win column

McCullers Jr. spins a gem as Astros get a much-needed win over Giants

Photo by Tim Bradbury/Getty Images

After getting swept by the A's in Oakland to end a road trip with a five-game losing streak, the Astros returned to Houston to try and get back on track. To do so, they'd need a win against the Giants on Monday night. Here is a quick recap of the series opener:

Final Score: Astros 6, Giants 4.

Record: 7-9, second in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Lance McCullers Jr. (2-1, 6.10 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Logan Webb (1-1, 2.81 ERA).

Houston builds up an early lead

The early goings of Monday's game went very similar to the last time Lance McCullers Jr. took the mound. He would have a terrific first three innings while his offense gave him an early lead. The first run came in the bottom of the second, with Yuli Gurriel reaching base on a one-out double, moving to third on a wild pitch, then scoring on an RBI-single by Carlos Correa.

Correa would take part in a four-run inning in the third, as Houston would score two on a two-RBI ground-rule double by Michael Brantley, another on an error, then Correa's second RBI of the night, a groundout to bring in a run and make it 5-0. Unlike the last start in Arizona, where the roof opened and McCullers Jr. fell apart in the fourth, he was able to make quick work of his opponent for a 1-2-3 frame. As he kept recording scoreless innings, Martin Maldonado added another run to the lead with a one-out solo home run in the bottom of the sixth, making it 6-0.

McCullers Jr. takes a no-hitter into the seventh

While the Astros were building their lead, McCullers Jr. was spinning a gem on the mound. He allowed just one baserunner through the first six innings, which came on a hit-by-pitch. He entered the seventh with a no-hitter in progress, but the Giants would get their first hit of the night to end the no-hit bid.

Regardless, the start was precisely what McCullers Jr. needed to restore his confidence after the disastrous inning he had in his last appearance. He would go on to complete the seventh inning before Houston would go to the bullpen with the large lead in the eighth. His final line: 7.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K 0 HR, 1 HPB.

Houston gets back in the win column despite more struggles by Josh James

Josh James entered out of the bullpen for the top of the eighth but allowed the first run of the night for San Francisco via a solo home run with one out to make it 6-1. He would complete the inning and then return for the top of the ninth. He would have another rocky inning, issuing a leadoff walk before a single and double would make it a four-run game at 6-2, still with no outs in the inning and runners on second and third, prompting another call to the bullpen.

Dusty Baker would bring in his current closer, Ryan Pressly, to try and finish the game, now in a save situation. Pressly would retire the first two batters he faced before allowing a two-RBI single to make it 6-4, but would eventually get the final out to get Houston the much-needed win. With the victory, the Astros moved back into second place in the AL West standings.

Up Next: The middle game of this three-game set will start Tuesday at 8:10 PM Central. The Giants, working with a fluid rotation, have not yet fully decided on their starter, while the Astros will get another start from Brandon Bielak (2-0, 0.87 ERA) who will look to repeat the success of his five-inning, no-run start in Arizona last week.

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome