The former Texans DB crushed the Texans and Fuller's absence could make perfect sense

Offense wasn't "horse----" and neither was Kareem's return

Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

3 Headlines, 2 Questions, 1 Bet as the Texans try to regroup after one of the worst losses under Bill O'Brien.

Kareem Jackson smashes in return

Kareem Jackson put it on his former team. He just absolutely smashed them. The former cornerback turned safety had everything going on Sunday. The pivotal two plays from him were the return of the Keke Coutee fumble and the huge shot on DeAndre Hopkins on the ensuing drive.

There is a solid argument to have Kareem Jackson still in a Texans uniform. He costs more than Tashaun Gipson but has played better than the current Texans safety. It always felt like this defensive staff felt he was more cornerback than safety. He clearly has excellent safety abilities. He was all over the field making every play for the Broncos. He isn't a cornerback anymore and should have been a full-time safety a while ago. Denver has afforded him that option.

"It wasn't horses--- on offense"

Bill O'Brien was wishy-washy on if there were positives for the Texans. He at first declared there were no positives but then later gave the above statement.

I don't agree or disagree with him.

They got worked in the passing game. The Broncos knew a lot of what was coming and the Texans couldn't get open. Their success late was all about Denver allowing them not what they did really.

I will say, they ran the ball pretty well and obviously couldn't keep running the ball when they were down big like they were early. Carlos Hyde averaged 5.2 a carry. The offensive line played decent.

The first quarter is a disaster for the Texans though. They have to score more and allow less or they can't be taken seriously. Simple.

The pattern continues

Loss - Win - Win

That has been the Texans pattern this season. A stark contrast from the team who fell behind early, rattled off a ton of wins in a row, and then faltered late.

Let's pretend the pattern holds up.

That's wins over the Titans in Tennessee and the Buccaneers in Tampa. A loss to the Titans at home. That's likely enough to make the playoffs and probably be the four seed as AFC South champions. That would likely mean a visit from the Bills.

Again, pretend with me the pattern holds.

Beat the Bills and you're likely on the road to Baltimore. Again. The pattern would have the Texans defeat the Ravens and then play on the road in the AFC Championship game, where they'd lose.

What did this tell us?

Nothing. Patterns are stupid and that's not happening. They're far more likely to drop two in a row and recover with back-to-back wins to sneak into the playoffs. They'll be the trendy pick to be upset at home should they play Buffalo.

Can Tunsil's issues be solved?

Sunday Laremy Tunsil said he is being picked on by officials for his false starts. Watching back the game against Denver, Tunsil had at least two that were missed by the officials and maybe a few more questionable that could have been calls.

I dug into the numbers on Tunsil yesterday. Look, it's ok to get a penalty here or there but in bunches and sometimes in key moments for the franchise left tackle that can't happen.

There has to be something with how the offense is run or called that has Tunsil jumping. He is too good to have to jump for a slight advantage. I wonder if there is extra work to be had with Deshaun Watson to make sure something like this doesn't keep happening.

He didn't commit this level of penalties last year, so he is capable of playing clean football. It is necessary for him to do so down the stretch.

Does Will Fuller mean that much?

I am convinced Will Fuller was in a situation like Jadeveon Clowney was in a few years ago. Clowney was pretty healthy, and could have played, but the team sat him on the road in Green Bay. The following week they played the Colts in a pivotal AFC South matchup. It worked as Clowney played really well and the Texans won on their way to securing another AFC South banner.

Seems to me if the Texans needed the game yesterday Fuller would have played. I understand the idea, and support it even, but there is a conversation to be had on how much better everything looks with him on the field. It didn't feel like anyone got deep, no deep shots were really taken, and when there were chances they were well covered.

Fuller is clearly a key to opening up this offense. It makes Hopkins more effective, the rushing attack (which played well yesterday) more effective, and Watson's legs are also more dangerous when Fuller is on the field. I expect he will be back Sunday giving the Titans fits.

I bet the Titans don't see Sunday's Texans in Tennessee

The Texans got caught by the sandwich game. Coming off the Patriots game and with the Titans next up the Broncos got the Texans. Fortunately for Houston they have bounced back well after stinkers this season. The Panthers debacle was followed up with a route of the Falcons. The disappointment in Indy saw them fully control Oakland in the second half the next week. The Baltimore blowout begat a Thursday night victory against the Colts four days later.

It would stand to reason Sunday's Texans are gone for at least a week. Credit to Bill O'Brien, they pull up their bootstraps after losses, regardless of the fact those losses are far to familiar.

Speaking of things that won't last, surely Ryan Tannehill's magical season can't continue.

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Houston gets another victory in Anaheim

Astros overpower Angels again as magic number dwindles

Kyle Tucker had 3 of Houston's RBI on Tuesday night, including a two-run homer. Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images

After a beatdown of the Angels on Monday in the opener, the Astros entered Tuesday's game looking to replicate that success. Though Los Angeles would put up more of a fight, Houston still used their potent offense to keep the game out of reach.

Final Score: Astros 10, Angels 5

Astros' Record: 90-61, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Jose Urquidy (8-3)

Losing Pitcher: Packy Naughton (0-3)

Houston's bats keep connecting to back up Urquidy

The Astros picked up on Tuesday's game where they left off on Monday, launching homers to take and extend a lead. A leadoff walk by Carlos Correa in the top of the second set up Kyle Tucker, who drove a two-run shot. Aledmys Diaz was next, making it back-to-back jacks to push the new lead to 3-0.

That gave Jose Urquidy a lead to work with, which came in handy as former Astro Jack Mayfield cut the lead to two runs with a leadoff solo homer in the bottom of the second. Other than that, Urquidy did well through five innings, allowing just two other hits over that span. LA got to him in the sixth, getting two singles to set up a three-run homer to end his night. His final line: 5.1 IP, 6 H, 4 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 2 HR, 79 P.

The runs keep coming

He would still leave in line for the win, though, as before that bottom of the sixth, the Astros had put up seven more runs across the fifth and sixth. A leadoff walk in the top of the fifth was followed by a two-run homer by Jose Altuve, then later in the frame, an RBI single by Aledmys Diaz made it 7-1. They pushed that to double digits in the sixth, with a leadoff solo shot by Martin Maldonado, a sac fly by Carlos Correa, and an RBI groundout by Kyle Tucker, putting them up 10-1 before the homer allowed by Urquidy cut that to 10-4.

Astros win to reduce magic number again

In the sixth, Cristian Javier took over for Urquidy, finished that inning, and returned for a scoreless seventh. He ran into Shohei Ohtani to lead off the bottom of the eighth and left a fastball in the zone, which Ohtani turned around 445 feet to make it a five-run game. Javier still got through the inning, leaving just the ninth for Houston's second reliever of the night, Josh James. James would get through a scoreless inning, erasing a leadoff walk as the lopsided win paired with an A's loss reduces Houston's magic number to 4.

Up Next: The third of this four-game series will be another 8:38 PM Central start on Wednesday. Janson Junk (0-1, 2.25 ERA) will make his third career start for the Angels, while Luis Garcia (11-7, 3.37 ERA) will have the ball for the Astros.

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