Houston Texans GM seemed to tip his hand on Super Bowl blueprint, HOF coach co-signs

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Houston Texans GM seemed to tip his hand on Super Bowl blueprint, HOF coach co-signs
How do the Texans compare to one of the best offenses in NFL history? Composite Getty Image.

The Houston Texans caught a lot of people off guard last week by rewarding receiver Nico Collins with a three-year contract extension worth up to $75 million.

Collins was terrific in 2023, but there are some concerns about his ability to stay healthy, as he has never played a full season in his three-year career.

Texans GM Nick Caserio joined Kay Adams last week on her show Up & Adams to discuss the deal. During the interview, Adams asked Caserio about the 2007 Patriots, as Nick was the wide receivers coach for New England that year.

That was the season the Pats went 16-0, and lost to the Giants in the Super Bowl. One could argue they had one of the best offenses in NFL history. Tom Brady threw for 50 touchdowns, and Randy Moss caught an NFL record 23 of them. Caserio said in the interview that the team was looking to upgrade their roster after the Colts eliminated them from the postseason in 2006.

That offseason, the Patriots traded for both Moss and Wes Welker. This conversation got us thinking about some similarities between the Texans and the 2007 Patriots wide receivers. Modeling this Texans receiving group after one of the best in NFL history sounds like a pretty smart move. And who would know more about it than the guy who coached those receivers?

At the time, many believed Moss was no longer the explosive player he was earlier in his career. It turns out Moss (age 30) still had plenty left in the tank once he was traded from Oakland to New England.

There have been similar questions about Stefon Diggs (age 30), who saw a dropoff in his production over the second half of the 2023 season.

But when it comes to body type, the easiest comparison to Randy Moss on the Texans' roster would be Nico Collins. Both Collins and Moss are 6' 4, weigh around 210-215 pounds, and can beat defenses on deep routes.

If we were to compare a player on the 2007 Patriots to Diggs, Donte Stallworth makes the most sense. Both players are 6 feet tall and weigh just under 200 pounds.

What about Tank Dell? Dell's body type is very similar to Wes Welker's. The Texans list Dell at 5'10, 165 pounds, and Welker was listed at 5'9, 185.

Caserio talked about how the receivers on the 2007 team really complemented each other in size and skill set. So by looking at how Bill Belichick and Caserio put together and implemented that historic receiving corps, maybe we can learn some things about the 2024 Texans receivers.

These players have more in common than just size, let's look at their receiving yards per reception. Collins posted 16.2 Y/R in 2023. Moss came in at 15.2 in 2007.

Welker playing mostly out of the slot averaged 10.5 yards per catch. Diggs had 11.1 Y/R last season.

And Tank Dell's numbers looked pretty similar to Donte Stallworth's. Dell recorded 15.1 yards per catch last year, compared to 15.2 for Stallworth in 2007.

One thing that could really work in the Texans favor is Tank Dell's ability to win on short routes in the slot, and take the top off a defense down the field. In fact, Diggs and Dell both have that ability, so the Texans can mix and match with those guys, putting defenses in a bind. Teams didn't fear Welker getting behind them on deep routes, but that's a different story for Diggs and Dell.

Finally, the comparisons to the 2007 Patriots don't stop at the wide receivers. Brady and Stroud have some interesting comps as well!

Don't miss the video above as we dive deep into the numbers to see how the 2007 Patriots compare to the 2024 Texans, and what that reveals about Houston's offensive blueprint moving forward.

Plus, Hall of Fame coach Tony Dungy weighs in on the Texans, and if they have what it takes to win the Super Bowl this season.

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Giants defeat the Astros, 5-3. Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images.

Austin Slater had three hits and drove in two runs to help the San Francisco Giants beat the Houston Astros 5-3 on Wednesday.

Slater also stole a base and scored for San Francisco, which took the rubber game of the three-game series in a speedy 2 hours, 7 minutes.

Yordan Álvarez homered for Houston, which has lost three of four overall.

The Giants jumped on Framber Valdez for five runs and eight hits in four innings. Valdez (5-4) threw 59 pitches in his shortest outing of the season, finishing with just one strikeout, his fewest in a game since July 26 when he had one against Texas.

San Francisco right-hander Logan Webb (6-5) permitted three runs and seven hits in six innings.

Ryan Walker, Tyler Rogers and Camilo Doval combined for three scoreless innings in relief. Doval struck out former Giants utility player Mauricio Dubón to end the game, earning his 12th save in 14 chances.

Wilmer Flores gave San Francisco an early lead with a sacrifice fly in the third. Matt Chapman followed with an RBI double.

Jeremy Peña drove in Houston’s first run on an infield single in the fourth.

Slater answered with a two-run single in the bottom of the inning, and Heliot Ramos added a sacrifice fly to make it 5-1.

Álvarez hit a two-run homer to center in the sixth, his 14th of the year.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Astros: OF Kyle Tucker (right shin contusion) has not begun baseball activities and is not expected to return Friday when he is eligible to come off the injured list. However, manager Joe Espada did not rule him out for the weekend. ... C Yainer Díaz missed his third straight game with a sore right index finger, though Espada said he was available off the bench and should be ready to start Friday.

Giants: LHP Blake Snell (left groin strain) threw off a mound for the first time since going on the IL on June 3. ... RHP Austin Warren (right elbow UCL surgery) pitched a scoreless inning with one strikeout in a rehab outing with Single-A San Jose on Wednesday.

UP NEXT

Astros: Return home for a three-game series against the Detroit Tigers beginning Friday night. RHP Hunter Brown (2-5, 5.58 ERA) seeks his fifth straight quality start, while Detroit hadn’t announced a starter.

Giants: Host the Los Angeles Angels in a three-game series starting Friday night. Neither team had announced a starter.

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