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Pro Football Focus grades: Brock Osweiler playing well; two Texans bounce back

Brock "The Ostrich" Osweiler is playing at a high level for the Dolphins. Michael Reaves/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 good and bad from the Texans and a look at the upcoming opponent as well. 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.

Greg Mancz - 70.1 Run Blocking Grade

Greg Mancz rattled off a grade higher than any in this category by injured starting right guard Zach Fulton. Mancz was also a part of the standout dominant rushing play where he and center Nick Martin and right tackle Kendall Lamm combined to blow the Jaguars defense off the line of scrimmage and open a huge hole for Lamar Miller. It was much better than Mancz's other starting appearance which was at left guard against the Giants earlier this season. With the short week, he may get to ply his trade against the Dolphins if Fulton hasn't fully recovered. 

Whitney Mercilus - 90.0 Pass Rush Grade

He's back! He had his highest grade in almost every defensive graded category. Mercilus forced a fumble on Blake Bortles and racked up his first sack of the season as well. He was very active rushing the passer with plenty of opportunities. The previous weeks he had seen fewer chances to get after the quarterback. He seems to finally be rounding into form after his preseason was non-existent thanks to injury. 

Deshaun Watson - 55.8 Offensive Grade

His second worst game via grades and statistics but a big tick up from the previous week when he was first dealing with his injury. Watson was protected by a rushing attack that broke out but did more than enough to make plays for the team to win. He got back to scrambling after sticking around in the pocket mostly the previous week. With a vicious pass rush and talented secondary, it made sense for Watson to have a down statistical game. 

Brock Osweiler - 75.3 Offensive Grade

Brock Osweiler makes his return to NRG Stadium for the first time since he was the team's quarterback. He comes in playing decent and grading out well. Osweiler completed 72 percent of his passes against the Lions and his yards per attempt check in the highest ever in his career. His passer rating on the season is 107 which would be good for seventh best in the league ahead of Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, and Ben Roethlisberger, for whatever passer rating is worth. He isn't playing bad coming into Thursday Night Football

As always, you can join Pro Football Focus here.

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The Texans are moving in the wrong direction. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

1. This team started incredibly slow and outside of a couple of drives in the second half disappointed. The defense got worked by the Chargers' star players, and the offense sputtered too often. It was really a summary of the season up to this point which is to say inconsistency.

2. Davis Mills was shaky early. The first drive interception was tough to stomach. The pocket got messy as he tried to drive the ball and he floated one up there. It gave the Chargers an easy drive for seven points.

3. One of the early offensive mistakes erased a scoring opportunity. Kenyon Green got nailed for a holding call that erased one of the best passes and catches between Brandin Cooks and Davis Mills all season. The rookie’s mistake was compounded the very next play when the offense allowed Mills to be sacked. It was a 40-yard swing that led to a punt.

4. Another third down penalty led to a mishap for the Texans. Laremy Tunsil gets a false start on third down to make it third and 10. The shovel pass to Rex Burkhead goes for six yards and then the Texans botch the field goal. Back-to-back drives and third-down penalties affected the offense and ended with no points. That was all just in the first quarter!

5. The Texans were abysmal with short yardage in key spots yet again. In the second quarter, Pep Hamilton opted for a pass on fourth and one. Davis Mills never got the play off and was sacked. After the game, Mills said the team wanted to catch the Chargers off guard running when most expected a pass, but Rex Burkhead was the running back. It was again a situation, a key and critical moment, that the team trusted Burkhead over the more dynamic Dameon Pierce.

6. The Chargers were very chunky on offense against the Texans. There were 16 plays that went for at least ten yards for the Chargers of their 67 plays. Mike Williams and Austin Ekeler were fantastic for Los Angeles.

7. The pass rush was non-existent for the Texans. This was one of the more disappointing aspects of the day to consider the Chargers were playing a rookie right guard, their center is injured but playing, and the left tackle was a backup left tackle. Nothing seemed to get home on an injured Justin Herbert. The Texans recorded just two quarterback hits in the game.

8. The linebackers got worked again. This is the absolute weakest unit on the team right now. They look like they’re easily exploited by most opposing offenses.

9. It was a rough day for the rookie class of the Texans. Derek Stingley was handled by Mike Williams on multiple occasions in key spots. Kenyon Green allowed a big sack and had a holding penalty erase a huge play. Jalen Pitre was the target of some offensive success in the Chargers' passing game.

10. Not all the rookies had a bad day. Dameon Pierce is so much fun to watch. He has the chance to be a truly impactful player for this team. His 75-yard touchdown scamper gave the team some juice, and he constantly fights and gets extra yards when the ball is headed his way. He finished with 14 carries and six catches for 20 total touches.

11. The Texans need teams to help them stay in games, and even then, it is a challenge. The tough part about where the Texans are through four games is there are some positives to look at and point to, but not enough to say the team is surely headed in the right direction. There surely has to be some adjustment by the team when the season is where it is after nearly a quarter of the year. The current direction isn’t going to lead anywhere positive soon.

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