Falcon Points

Ranking the 5 biggest moves in a busy summer for Houston sports

Compilation by Brandon Strange

Someone asked me on Twitter if there has ever been a more active summer in terms of Houston sports teams both on and off the field. You would be hard-pressed to find one. Let's look at the five biggest moves this summer and grade them:

5) Texans go GM by committee, ship out Clowney for nothing

Texans Jadeveon ClowneyHouston Texans/Facebook

The Texans botched their draft, then fired their GM search and botched that, leaving them with a "flatter" organization. It's also a dumber one. Mainly because of the "deal" they made to trade Jadeveon Clowney.

This is a move the Texans did not need to make, especially if they were going to go all-in on the other move on this list. Trading one of your best five players when you did not need to is frankly just dumb. Seattle might only get a year out of him, but then they would get a third round pick if he signs elsewhere, which is basically what they give up. Huge win for Seattle.

Grade: F.

4) Verlander's dominance

Justin Verlander pitches Game 1. Bob Levey/Getty Images

Justin Verlander cemented his Cy Young case with a no-hitter on Sunday in Toronto, striking out 14. Verlander is 17-5 with 2.56 ERA and 257 strikeouts. We are seeing a future Hall of Famer at his very best.

Grade: A+.

3) Astros additions

Colorado Rockies v Houston Astros

The Astros made a big splash at the deadline, acquiring Zack Greinke. While he has not been dominant yet as an Astro, he is one of the best in the business and the move bolstered the Astros World Series chance. In addition, the exciting young Jordan Alvarez was called up and all he has done is make a run at the Rookie of the Year award by hitting well over .300 with 22 HRs and 63 RBI in just 66 games. Throw in Aaron Sanchez's debut with a combined no-hitter and the Stros continue to be the best run organization in the city.

Grade: A+

2) Texans go all in on Tunsil

After the disastrous Clowney trade, the Texans shipped two No. 1s and a 2 to Miami for Laremy Tunsil and WR Kenny Stills. Tunsil is something the Texans have been desperate for ever since they shipped off Duane Brown for nothing - a legitimate, No. 1 left tackle with upside. The price was steep, but players like Tunsil are rarely available. He should make a huge difference. It also makes the Clowney trade worse, because if you are going all-in on the season, why don't you keep him?

Grade: B

1) Rockets acquire Westbrook

Russell WestbrookJayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

The Rockets made a huge splash, acquiring former MVP Russell Westbrook for Chris Paul and a package of picks. While it may or not be a fit, putting Westbrook with Harden gives the Rockets an intriguing duo in the Western Conference. For sheer entertainment value, the Rockets get a good grade.

Grade: A-

The bottom line

The Texans and Rockets may never have another first-round pick, but if either team is successful, that will be forgotten. The Astros continue to be the gold standard by which all others are measured. Regardless, it has been one hell of an active summer. Now we will see how it all plays out when it counts.

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The Texans play their final preseason game against the Saints on Sunday night. Composite Getty Image.

The 2023 NFL season is basically here. Yes, there's another preseason game left to play. Yes, there's still 37 guys that need to be cut. Yes, there are some last minute tweaks and changes to season plans that need to be made. Yes, DeMeco Ryans will name a starting quarterback (cough, C.J. Stroud, cough). And yes, bets will be placed. With that being said, here's a look at some of the futures that involved the Texans:

O/U 6.5 season win total: When last season ended, this number was hovering around four or four and a half in most places. Enter DeMeco Ryans, his new staff, C.J. Stroud, and Will Anderson Jr. Expectations shot up to the tune of an additional two games. If Vegas thinks the Texans can potentially win seven games, who am I to argue? I'm leaning on the under here, but barely. The run defense in that Dolphins game scared me. So does a rookie quarterback starting when his offensive line isn't all healthy. I'll be glad to be wrong about this one.

Defensive Rookie of the Year Will Anderson Jr +350: The rookie EDGE is the leader in the clubhouse for Defensive Rookie of the Year. Next best odds belong to Eagles' Jalen Carter at +600. Anderson Jr is easily the one guy that will have the highest impact on his new team when comparing the rookies. This defense has been void of an effective pass rush since J.J. Watt's Comeback Player of the Year award in the 2018 season. He's the prototypical pass rusher playing for a coach that helped shape one of the baddest defenses in the league over the last several years. I think this is a safe bet.

Offensive Rookie of the Year C.J. Stroud +850: While Stroud has shown signs of his skill set that made him the number two overall pick, he still has a way to go. The receivers aren't great, the offensive line is banged up, the run game is decent, and he's presumably going to be thrown in the fire. This award usually goes to a rookie who contributes to a playoff team, or the quarterback that puts up good numbers on an exciting losing team. I don't see Stroud putting up crazy numbers. Instead, I'd put money on a running back or receiver to win it this year. Another one I hope I'm wrong about, but worth a small flyer on.

Texans win AFC South +850/AFC +10000: Miracles happen every day. The blind regain sight. The cripple walk. You get the point. However, I can only see a scenario of the Texans winning the AFC South if the Jags fall completely off, the Titans continue to take steps back, and the Colts implode after trading their best player. Too much has to go right for them to win the division, much less make a Super Bowl appearance. If you want, place the minimum bet allowed just in case.

While Vegas seems to see the Texans as a team on the come up, they're still not convinced this team is worthy of contending for a playoff spot. I'm okay with them not being highly thought of right now. That will give them the element of surprise when it comes to others taking them lightly. By others, I mean other fan bases and media of opposing teams. No NFL team should be taken lightly by another NFL team. They're all professionals who work incredibly hard to get to where they are. Again, I hope I'm wrong about a couple of these. I'd love nothing more than to be writing another article eating crow in January. This is why they play the games. CUE HERM EDWARDS!

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