Texans vs Redskins: Observations

The good, bad and ugly: Texans ski-mask their way to another win

Demaryius Thomas (left) and DeAndre Hopkins celebrate. Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

The Texans won their seventh in a row beating the Skins 23-21. This was a whirlwind of a game that had swings in momentum all the way until the end. Here’s what I observed:

The Good

-Rookie safety Justin Reid came up with a 101-yard pick six when the Skins were threatening to score before halftime. It’s his third pick on the season. He continues to show why he was potentially the steal of the draft in the third round.

-The run game looked healthy today totaling 139 yards on 31 carries. The Skins run defense was ranked fifth with a 90.9 yards per game average coming into today. This performance was needed since the pass game underperformed.

-I only saw Jadeveon Clowney rush from the standing linebacker position to the middle of the offensive line twice in the first half. Both times, he caused trouble. They lined him up there more in the second half and he got a sack on one crucial third down in the fourth quarter forcing a punt. I love seeing him rush inside from that standing position almost as much as I like tacos.

The Bad

-Deshaun Watson completed a pass to five different Texans, but none of them were to Demariyus Thomas! They spent a couple draft picks to get him in wake of Will Fuller being out for the season. This was akin to buying a used luxury vehicle, but not driving it.

-I tweeted out the kid smiley face when I saw Colt McCoy was coming into the game for the Skins. He ended up leading the Skins to taking the lead in the fourth quarter which was the first time they had a lead change all season!

-Kicker Ka’imi Fairbairn missed two field goals today (44 and 45 yarders). The second would’ve required the Skins to score a touchdown to win. Luckily the Skins missed a 63-yarder that could have won the game.  

The Ugly

-Before half time, the team lost Zach Fulton and Senio Kelemete to injury. It’s especially tough when they came into the game with seven offensive linemen on the game day roster. Neither came back into the game.

-Watson threw two picks today. He hasn’t thrown one in the last three games. This could have cost them the game given the way it was played so close. His decision-making under pressure has to improve.

-Skins quarterback Alex Smith was sandwiched between Watt and Kareem Jackson on a sack. Unfortunately, it appears as if his leg was broken in the process. Huge sign of the respect he has earned when both teams came over to check on him.

The Texans seventh straight win after starting 0-3 was the first time since 1925 that has happened. Most of the wins have been as improbable as today’s. This team has almost given away games all season. Somehow, they’ve found a way to escape. They are like the villain in a movie that keeps getting away with their crimes. Hopefully, they won’t get caught any time soon.


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Houston's magic number stays at 2

Astros drop series finale to Mariners after rough start by Greinke

Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

With their magic number at 2 to secure their spot in the 2020 MLB postseason, the Astros returned to T-Mobile Park in Seattle for this three-game series' finale and rubber game. Here are the highlights from the game:

Final Score: Mariners 3, Astros 2.

Record: 28-28, second in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Nick Margevicius (2-3, 4.57 ERA)

Losing pitcher: Zack Greinke (3-3, 4.03 ERA).

Greinke unable to complete five innings

While the Astros were being held scoreless, the Mariners were putting up runs on Zack Greinke. They took an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first with back-to-back singles followed by an RBI-double with one out. Greinke would stop the damage there, then looked to settle in over the next few frames.

He allowed just one baserunner in the second through fourth innings, a one-out single in the bottom of the fourth. Then, in the fifth, the Mariners would knock him out of the game by getting a one-out single that would come around to score on a two-out RBI-double, followed by an RBI-single to extend the lead to 3-0. Greinke faced one more batter, allowing a single before Dusty Baker would take the ball and move to the bullpen. His final line: 4.2 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 0 HR, 92 P.

Astros try a late rally, come up short

On the other end, the Astros were unable to break through against Nick Margevicius, getting just one hit and two walks through the first four innings. They had a chance to get on the board in the top of the fifth, starting the inning with back-to-back singles before a walk loaded the bases with one out to turn the lineup over. They'd come up empty, though, with George Springer striking out before a long flyball to center by Jose Altuve to end the inning.

After finishing the fifth for Greinke, Andre Scrubb returned for a scoreless sixth, working around a one-out walk. Still 3-0, Blake Taylor took over on the mound in the bottom of the seventh, erasing a leadoff single and two-out walk to keep Seattle from extending their lead. Houston had another chance to score in the top of the eighth, getting two runners in scoring position, but again would strand them.

Cy Sneed was the next reliever out for the Astros, working around a two-out walk to send the game on to the ninth. The Astros would avoid the shutout, getting a two-RBI single by pinch-hitting Josh Reddick in the top of the ninth to make it a one-run game at 3-2. That's as close as they'd come, though, as the Mariners would eventually get the final out to take the series and keep the Astros' magic number stagnant at 2.

Up Next: There is one series left in the regular season for Houston, and it awaits them in Arlington with a four-game series against the Rangers, who are well eliminated from playoff contention. The first of the four games will start at 7:05 PM Central on Thursday with a pitching matchup of Lance Lynn (6-2, 2.53 ERA) for Texas and Cristian Javier (4-2, 3.33 ERA) for the Astros.

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