A WEEKLY REVIEW OF O'BRIEN'S CRENNEL'S COACHING
Now my job: Big win for the Texans and Romeo Crennel
The Texans came away with a big win Sunday besting the Jags 30-14. It was a huge win. The biggest win of the season. Bigly. It was the best. I'd go as far as to say this was the best win this team has had ever!
Enough with the superlatives. This was a good win. I was impressed by the way the coaching staff handled things. They put the players in position to execute and the players did just that.
At 73 years and 115 days, Romeo Crennel was the oldest coach in NFL history. He's also the oldest to win a game. The offense and defense looked different, and for the better. Let's take a look at some of the things that I found that were worthy of praise, and criticism:
The output of the offense was impressive. Deshaun Watson threw for 359 yards and three touchdowns. David Johnson ran for 96 yards. Will Fuller, Darren Fells, and Brandin Cooks each caught touchdown passes from Watson. Cooks caught eight passes for 161 yards. The offense looked fluid and was productive. The biggest difference I saw was Watson checking into and out of plays. You could tell he was more comfortable checking in and out of plays at the line of scrimmage. The no huddle and/or sugar huddle was executed perfectly. Keeping things up-tempo kept the Jags off guard and kept the Texans in rhythm. Watson did throw two picks. The first was all on him, but the second wasn't. At first, David Johnson looked like the complete bust that he's been the last few years. He regained some life and looked good later on. The zone split run play was a favorite. The tight end would motion then block across the line of scrimmage, while the offensive line would zone block to the inside. Johnson had some of his best runs off this play. Major props to Tim Kelly as the offensive coordinator for recognizing what he has, what it's capable of, and calling plays accordingly.
Anthony Weaver called a good game on defense. It was scary at first because they couldn't stop the Jags. Too many times they weren't getting pressure and were getting burned. Eventually, the blitzes dialed up started causing trouble. They even found a way to get two turnovers! They were their first two turnovers of the season and they came at the right times. Several times down the stretch as they were nursing a lead, the pressure caused incompletions, led to sacks, or a turnover. Sure it was the Jags, but it was a win and a much-needed flex of some muscle on both sides of the ball.
The elephant in the room undoubtedly will be if this was done because of or in spite of Bill O'Brien's absence. One can only speculate. Time will tell. They have the Titans, Packers, and Jags again in their next three games. If they somehow pull away from that stretch 4-4, I'll be more impressed. The Packers are a Super Bowl favorite in the NFC and will not be easy. The Titans are solid, but beatable, and they just beat the Jags. 4-4 at the half point puts them in position to make the playoffs still. Even a 3-5 record leaves them an outside shot, especially considering the extra playoff spot. Here's to us finding out if O'Brien's absence is addition by subtraction! Cheers!
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