TEXANS FINISH THE SEASON 4-12
Some important takeaways from the Texans final game of the season
Division games are always tough. No matter the records or what's on the line, division games rarely seem to disappoint, especially when it comes down to the end of the season. In this case, we had the Titans fighting for playoff positioning, while the Texans were playing for pride. Turns out, the Titans' playoff positioning and winning the AFC South meant a bit more to them than the Texans' pride meant to them as the Titans pulled out a 41-38 win on a last second field goal that banged in off the upright.
The brightest spot in this mess is clearly Deshaun Watson. He was 28/39 for 365 yards and three touchdowns. The lone interception he threw wasn't all his fault. Watson ended this season with 4,823 yards passing that led the league. He also threw a team record 33 touchdown passes. All those numbers without a true number one receiver, no run game, okay at best offensive line, and a terrible defense. Imagine what he could do if he had improvements in those areas? Some will say he's putting up gaudy numbers on a bad team that was often behind. There is some merit to that, but this kid is special. I believe he could do this, and it could translate into wins if he had improvements in the areas I just listed.
If Anthony Weaver (and to a lesser extent Romeo Crennel) still has a job when you're reading this, The McNairs should sell the team. They gave up 288 yards rushing to the Titans. I understand they're going against Derrick Henry who's arguably the best running back in the league, but dammit man! This defense is nowhere near as talented as other defenses are, so I don't expect greatness. What I do expect are much better performances than the ones this defense has been giving.
For example, setting the edge against the run does not take an All-Pro at defensive end or linebacker or defensive back. It takes discipline. Twice on the Titans' last touchdown drive, J.J. Watt crashed hard down the line and went after Derrick Henry, only for Ryan Tannehill to keep it. One brought the ball to the 1-yard line, the other put the Titans up 38-35. I'm not saying it was his fault, because the keeper certainly could've been someone else's responsibility. Whoever it was, they failed.
Another key failure was the long pass to put the Titans in field goal range to end the game. It appeared as if they were in a cover 2 man and the safety on the right side of the field failed to stay over the top. That, or cover 1 and the single high safety blew it. Either way, they should've been in a cover 4 to blanket the field in four quadrants deep and give them anything they wanted underneath and in front. With 18 seconds left, nothing should beat you...except doing what the Texans' did.
This team has a lot of holes to fill, and not nearly enough materials to fill said holes with. The head coach and general manager search and hire should turn up a notch now that the regular season is over. Black Monday is upon us. So is interview season. I feel bad that this fan base only has the hirings of a new coach and GM as the high point of the upcoming offseason. Here's to hoping they make the right hires in both cases to get this franchise turned around.