RECAPPING THE TEXANS

The good, bad and ugly from the Texans 20-14 loss to the Colts on Sunday

DeAndre Hopkins and the Texans came oh so close Sunday, but fell short. Tim Warner/Getty Images

Game One of the Deshaun Watson-less Texans went as expected. Not much offense. Defense had to hold the fort down. 30-plus points scored streak is over. Here’s where I would insert the Elmo shoulder shrug GIF in a text to my friends.

The Good

-Tom Savage completed his first career touchdown pass! It was a 34 yarder to DeAndre Hopkins on a double move where he stepped up in pocket and dropped a dime. Here’s to hoping he likes the taste and longs to replicate that feeling.

-The defense has stepped up. Granted, it’s the Colts. But they performed well. 3 sacks and a fumble recovery for a touchdown is still something to be proud of.

The Bad

-They wasted two timeouts in the third quarter because of miscommunication. This team has trouble getting plays called and has had that problem in the Bill O’Brien era. Those timeouts came up again…

-…at the end of the game when they wasted over 20 seconds after the third down conversion . Indecision has plagued this team in crucial moments. Plays must be ready to be called and the team must be ready to go. Those two timeouts, or at least one of them, could have helped change play calling and saved time.

-Ka’imi Fairbairn missed his first field goal of the year early in 2nd quarter. I made a note at that point because I felt it would be a game changer. It came back to bite at the end of the game when they needed a touchdown to win instead of a field goal to tie.

The Ugly

-Savage is as inaccurate as a Revolutionary War musket. Going 19/44, averaging 4.2 yards per pass isn’t a recipe for winning games. Sure the offensive line is bad, but that was uglier than a blob fish.

-Ryan Griffin sustained a concussion. Texans are a walking infirmary. Key players are getting hurt at a rapid rate. Seems like every week they lose another key contributor.

-288 yards of offense against the 31st ranked defense? Really?!? Watson or not, that shouldn’t happen. They averaged 4.5 yards a carry rushing, but were behind and never really got anything going until late.

-Savage fumbled to end the game. He never got a chance to make a throw to win it because he was pressured from the left side. A mix of Chris Clark and Julién Davenport played left tackle this game since Duane Brown was traded.

Was this a disheartening loss? I’d lean towards yes. Were there looming signs of impending doom? Again, I’d lean towards yes. However, there are some bright spots. Like the fact that the Cleveland Browns may not suck so bad in the near future because they own the Texans’ 1st and 2nd round picks and Deshaun Watson has previously rehabbed a torn ACL so he should come back strong next year.

Most Popular

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome

Listen Live

Houston now trails in the fall classic

Astros fall in World Series Game 1 as Braves come out swinging

Framber Valdez had a forgettable start in World Series Game 1 as the Braves tagged him with five runs. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

After a dominant end to win the ALCS and American League pennant, the Houston Astros welcomed in the National League champion Atlanta Braves for World Series Game 1 at Minute Maid Park on Tuesday. With Houston favored to win not just this game but the entire series, the Braves shook up those expectations by finding early success at the plate to build a lead they would hold to take a 1-0 series lead.

Final Score: Braves 6, Astros 2

World Series (Best of Seven): Atlanta leads 1-0

Winning Pitcher: A.J. Minter

Losing Pitcher: Framber Valdez

Valdez unable to replicate ALCS Game 5 success as Braves mount early lead

For the optimist, not having home-field advantage in an MLB postseason series affords you a benefit: you can score first and take captive momentum first in the series. The Braves did that against Framber Valdez, as Jorge Soler became the first player in league history to hit a homer in the first plate appearance of a World Series, putting Atlanta out to an immediate 1-0 lead. They would get another in the first frame, getting a one-out infield single by Ozzie Albies, who would steal second to get in position for an RBI double by Austin Riley.

Houston had the chance to respond in their first inning against former teammate Charlie Morton, getting a single and two walks to load the bases with no outs. They'd strand all three runners, though, as Morton made it through unscathed but having used 26 pitches. Atlanta kept putting stress on Valdez, extending their lead to three runs with back-to-back singles to start the second before later getting an RBI groundout.

Valdez gave up two more in the top of the third, once again allowing a leadoff single, this one setting up a two-run homer to make it a 5-0 Braves lead and forcing Houston's starter out of the game early. Yimi Garcia entered and was able to retire the three batters he faced to end the frame.

Braves lose Morton to injury as both bullpens begin long night

After stranding the bases loaded in the bottom of the first to keep the Astros off the board, Morton followed it up with a 1-2-3 second. He started the bottom of the third by retiring his fifth batter in a row, getting a strikeout of Jose Altuve. He would immediately call trainers to get him out of the game, though, as he would later be diagnosed with a fractured fibula, presumably from a ball that ricocheted off his leg in the prior inning, ending his season in a disappointing turn of events for the Braves.

That set up a long night for both bullpens, and next up for Houston was Jake Odorizzi. He started with a scoreless fourth, working around a two-out error to keep it a five-run game. The Astros began a rally in the bottom of the fourth, getting runners on the corners with one out on a Kyle Tucker double and Yuli Gurriel single. Chas McCormick brought in the first run of the board for Houston, but that's all they would get as Atlanta's lead remained four runs.

Astros drop Game 1

Odorizzi kept going on the mound, tossing a 1-2-3 fifth, then getting one out before a one-out single in the top of the sixth would prompt Dusty Baker to move on to Phil Maton, who finished the inning. Maton returned in the top of the seventh, getting a strikeout before a double and a walk would result in the call to bring in Ryne Stanek.

A double play against his first batter allowed Stanek to finish the seventh, and then he returned in the eighth. He faced three batters that frame, getting one out before a walk and a single would put runners on the corners as Houston moved on to Brooks Raley. A sac fly by Freddie Freeman off of Raley made it a five-run lead again, but a leadoff triple by Yordan Alvarez in the bottom of the inning would set up Carlos Correa for an RBI, a groundout to make it 6-2.

Atlanta's bullpen continued to do well, though, limiting the damage to that one run in the eighth, then returning to hold on to the four-run lead in the bottom of the ninth to give the Braves the upset win to start the series. The loss extends their home losing streak in the World Series to five games (having lost all four at home in the 2019 World Series against the Nationals) and puts them down 0-1 and in need of a win in Game 2 to try and reset the series into a best-of-five.

Up Next: World Series Game 2 will be another 7:09 PM Central scheduled start time on Wednesday from Minute Maid Park. The expected pitching matchup is Max Fried, who is 1-1 with a 3.78 ERA in three postseason starts, for the Braves, and Jose Urquidy, who went just 1.2 innings while allowing six runs (five earned) in his start in the ALCS.

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome