Fantasy Football

Sports stars turn out for Fantasy Football Draft Night, but brothers steal the show

Hurricane Harvey may have caused a delay, but couldn't put a damper on the fifth annual Boys and Girls Harbor Houston's Fantasy Football Draft Night. Although the event had been postponed due to the storm and the NFL season has already started, the sold-out crowd of 450 sports fans, clad in their favorite sports team jerseys, turned out in force in support of the nonprofit. 

“It’s been a rough month or so since Harvey landed … it’s an important event and we were a little unsure about how it would all turn out, but we thank you all for being here,” said event chair Bill Lehner, who addressed guests onstage along with co-chairs, his wife Vicki Lehner, and Diane Englet.

The fun-filled night, held at the club level at NRG Stadium, featured a fantasy football competition, especially thrilling thanks to the roster of veteran athletes on-hand, offering tips.

Famous faces advising were Boys and Girls Harbor board member and Olympic gold medalist sprinter Fred Newhouse; former Houston Oilers head coach Ed Biles; former Olympian and current track and field head coach at the University of Houston Leroy Burrell; former offensive lineman for the St. Louis Cardinals, Houston Oilers, and Cleveland Browns Doug Dawson; and former wide receiver for the Houston Oilers and Boston Patriots Charlie Frazier.

Also in the lineup were former cornerback for the Buffalo Bills, Washington Redskins, and Detroit Lions Donovan Greer, Hall of Famer and former safety for the Houston Oilers and Washington Redskins Kenny Houston, former wide receiver for the Cleveland Browns and Houston Oilers Gerald McNeil, former Houston Texans offensive lineman Chester Pitts, and sports radio talk show host Vince Rachal.

When the final whistle blows at the end of the season, the winner of the contest will receive two tickets to Super Bowl Super Bowl LII in Minneapolis.

Stealing the spotlight from the moment they hit the stage were brothers Tony Winrow and Kente Winrow, alums of the Boys and Girls Harbor Houston program. Their heartfelt words and appreciation for the nonprofit, about how it not only changed their lives for the better, but also those of their children by breaking the cycle of abuse, touched those in the audience and received a standing ovation. 

KPRC Channel 2 sports director Randy McIlvoy emceed the evening’s draft activities, sponsored by H-E-B, Houston businessman Gary Peterson, SB Nation 1560 AM (soon to be SportsMap 94.1 FM), and ESPN 97.5 FM.

Including money raised from a wine pull and silent and live auctions, the evening raised more than $250,000, bringing the grand total to $1,000,000 raised since its inception in 2012. Proceeds go to help Boys and Girls Harbor Houston reach their goal to provide healthy, comprehensive residential care for children who are victims of abuse, neglect, abandonment, or family hardship.

Seen in the crowd: Karen De Geurin, DeeDee and Clay Rawlings, Arthur Mooradian, Gretchen and John Hodge, Melinda and Keith Landsness, Suzanne Skie-Azizi and Mir Azizi, Laura and Wayne Kinningham, Rhonda Newhouse, Don Sweat and his wife Diane Sweat, Claudia Pardivala, Ken Sellars, Monica and Joe Casiano, Ashley and Chris Petersen, and Bill King.

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Originally appeared on CultureMap.com.

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Another tough loss for Houston. Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images.

The Houston Texans lost again as their road game ineptitude continues. Former Texans stars DeAndre Hopkins and J.J. Watt helped the Cardinals to the 31-5 victory.

1. The lack of talent is getting exposed earlier and earlier each week. The Texans have seen games slip away faster and faster from them each week. The team is overmatched almost everywhere.

2. Penalties remain a problem for the Texans. It seems like clockwork the team gets an illegal motion or illegal formation each week. Jordan Akins torpedoed a drive with a chop block. Max Scharping erased a positive play with a hold.

3. Davis Mills had some solid moments, but again, this team isn't good. It is hard to assess Mills with this team. He's making quicker decisions but he doesn't have the time or the players to make big plays.

4. The offensive line stinks. The interior of the line is still a mess and with Laremy Tunsil down the edges find themselves shaky as well. The running backs don't block well. The blocking tight ends don't block well. It is bad football in what was supposed to be a much-improved unit.

5. Desmond King was the best returner in the preseason. The team elected to give Andre Roberts an opportunity for a few games, but with his departure, the duties went to King. King is the most successful returner the Texans have had in a long while. Yes, it is that clear after just one game.

6. Max Scharping was benched in favor of Justin McCray. McCray produced similar levels of success. Scharping was benched last year for a journey-man veteran as well. The former second-round pick isn't getting it done.

7. Speaking of former second-round picks, Lonnie Johnson had an interception. That was the highlight of his day. Otherwise, Johnson frequently has me asking "what is Lonnie Johnson doing?" The former second-round pick at cornerback has been less than impressive at safety. Johnson seems to frequently be out of position or making the wrong choice in coverage.

8. DeAndre Hopkins had a solid day against the team that traded him away. Hopkins hauled in seven catches for 53 yards and a touchdown. After he scored, Hopkins looked to bring his hands together and mimic a prayer motion. I don't anticipate this was a nod to Arian Foster but perhaps could this have been about Jack Easterby?

9. The Texans had some sacks, but little of that action came when the game was close. Jonathan Greenard added two sacks to his total. The success Greenard is having is frustrating when you consider he couldn't get on the field last season. Charles Omenihu returned to action and had some pressures for the defense.

10. During the game reports surfaced that the Panthers might be interested in trading for Deshaun Watson. It was also reported by the Houston Chronicle Watson had vetoed a trade to Philadelphia, so the Eagles will not be involved in the Watson sweepstakes. The Panthers can only trade two first-round picks. The Miami Dolphins have three first-round picks they can trade for Deshaun Watson.

11. The Texans decided on a "culture" head coach in David Culley. His team has looked lifeless on the road. While the Texans took their beating, the Lions gave it their all against a good Rams team. Detroit is winless, but they play harder and better than the Texans. It grows clearer each week "culture" is meaningless if the team can't win.

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