CODY STOOTS/PRO FOOTBALL FOCUS

Mariota unimpressive, Watson taking shots ahead of Monday

Marcus Mariota had a rough game against the Colts. Andy Lyons/Getty Images

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

Each week we will take a look at some of the key grades as well as some from the Texans upcoming opponent. 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

Brennan Scarlett - 94.4 Defensive Grade

Hello, secret weapon. Who knew he could play inside linebacker so well? The Texans it seems. And now, Washington. He only produced a handful of tackles but came up with an interception and did one heck of a job in coverage for the Texans. Scarlett has been a special teams weapon for almost the entire season and now in a pinch, the Texans found a good defensive use for him outside of his normal position. This is a testament to Scarlett and the coaching which helped get him ready. 

Greg Mancz - 29.5 Pass Blocking Grade

Mancz came in for an injured Zach Fulton and had a surprisingly low grade. Mancz had done well filling in for Fulton earlier in the season when he was injured. He allowed the most pressures on the team in this game with four. It may have been a bad matchup for him, much like the Giants were earlier in the season when he filled in at left guard. A rare bad game for Mancz in this spot as he had been solid. 

Deshaun Watson - 14.9 Yards Per Attempt on Blitzed Plays

Watson saw a blitz on 10 dropbacks and was sacked twice. On the other eight plays, he tried to make a big play. It was the only situation in which he had a double-digit YPA. Watson's YPA was short, the Texans had a lot of yards after the catch. This is something Watson is very capable of doing because the offensive line has been good recently and his feet let him extend the plays. With play-calling being fairly conservative, Watson taking advantage of the defense risking blitz is good to see. 

Marcus Mariota - 34.8 Offensive Grade

The Titans quarterback is hurt and coming off a horrible performance in Indianapolis. His worst of the season in fact. He passed for just 85 yards and was injured and replaced by Blaine Gabbert. The week before though he posted his highest grade of the season against New England. He's about average for the season and that's what the Texans just faced in Alex Smith. He didn't play against the Texans earlier in the year, but ahead of Monday, he has a chance to finally impress against the Texans. He's thrown just one touchdown pass in three games against Houston. 

As always, you can join Pro Football Focus here

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Houston is falling down the rankings

Tigers pound Odorizzi, Astros with homers as Houston drops fourth in a row

The Astros have not looked great in their last four games. Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

After watching their hot start of 6-1 cool down to a 6-4 record with three straight losses, the Astros returned to Minute Maid Park on Tuesday night, looking to do a better job at home against a beatable Tigers team.

Recent games' woes would continue, though, with Houston's pitching getting blasted by the opposing offense and their own bats primarily quiet.

Final Score: Tigers 8, Astros 2

Astros' Record: 6-5, tied for second in AL West

Winning Pitcher: Matthew Boyd (2-1)

Losing Pitcher: Jake Odorizzi (0-1)

Astros score first, then Tigers unload on Odorizzi

Houston looked to have something brewing in the bottom of the second, with three singles in the first four batters of the inning, the third an RBI-single by Myles Straw to put the Astros in front 1-0. However, Matthew Boyd would limit the damage, getting back-to-back strikeouts to end the threat.

After two easy innings for Jake Odorizzi in his regular-season debut for his new team, he would allow a game-tying solo homer to Akil Baddoo, his fourth of the year, in the top of the third. Detroit struck again in the top of the fourth, getting a leadoff double to set up a two-run go-ahead home run to jump ahead 3-1.

They didn't stop there, getting another two-run bomb later in the same inning; a frame that would take Odorizzi 31 pitches to get only one out before Houston would bring in Bryan Abreu to get the last two outs. Odorizzi's final line in his debut: 3.1 IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 3 HR, 0 BB, 4 K, 80 P.


Detroit continues home run parade, Houston loses fourth in a row

Abreu would hope to do what Luis Garcia did the night before, eat up as many innings as possible after a poor outing from Houston's starter. The Tigers would get yet another two-run homer, though, in the top of the fifth, extending their lead to 7-1, with all seven runs coming over a three-inning span. For good measure, they'd knock one more out with two outs in the top of the ninth, making it 8-1.

As far as Houston at the plate, other than their string of hits to bring in a run earlier in the second, they were getting nothing done against Boyd, who would go six and two-thirds innings. Detroit's bullpen would finish things off, despite an all-too-late sac fly by the Astros in the bottom of the ninth, with Houston dropping their fourth-straight game and continuing to lose ground in the division.

Up Next: The finale of this three-game set with Detroit will be an hour earlier on Wednesday, getting underway at 6:10 PM Central. Lance McCullers Jr. (1-0, 1.80 ERA) will try to maintain his perfect record and improve upon his two five-inning one-run starts for the Astros, going opposite of Michael Fulmer (0-0, 2.57 ERA) for the Tigers.

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