Rock 'n' Roll!
You heard it here first: the definitive Texans prediction for Week 1 and beyond
Spring may be the time when, according to the English poet Alfred Lord Tennyson, "a young man's fancy turns to thoughts of love."
But this is fall, at least we're pretty darn close, and in America everybody's obsession turns to thoughts of football.
The National Football League's 102nd season starts a week from today with a larrupin' (awesome word) clash between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Dallas Cowboys. It's the defending Super Bowl champs with the greatest quarterback ever against America's Team with their star quarterback returning from injury, on a Thursday night which otherwise hasn't been "Must See TV" since the '90s when Friends, Seinfeld, Frasier and E.R. ruled prime time.
Other marquee matchups following on Sunday, pick'em: Seahawks-Colts, Steelers-Bills, Browns-Chiefs, Dolphins-Patriots, and Packers-Saints.
It's much easier to dial in the Stinker of the Week: that's right here at NRG Stadium: the Jacksonville Jaguars (1-15 last year) against our soap opera Houston Texans, saddled with a new general manager, new head coach, sadly the old owner and a $156 million quarterback sentenced to time out while 22 civil suits and 10 criminal investigations involving sexual misconduct wind their way through the legal system. Oh, and the quarterback hates being here and wants to be traded no matter what.
Hurricane season ain't got nothing on the ill winds that'll be blowing at NRG Stadium this year. After 20 years of rock solid sell-outs and a season ticket waiting list 60,000 deep, the Texans are practically begging "who needs 2?" on TV commercials. Face value is merely a far-fetched asking price for tickets on StubHub and those friendly vendors lining Kirby on game day. Like the audience yells on The Price is Right … "lower!"
In other NFL cities fans worry, "What will we do if our first-string quarterback gets injured and we have to play our backup?" We don't have that problem. Our superstar quarterback won't be injured this year, he's perfectly healthy on the inactive list, and we're starting his backup. And all bets are off if our third-round rookie gets the call.
The Texans offense looks so dreary that if they do score a touchdown, radio play-by-play announcer Marc Vandermeer may shout "Waltz in D Minor!" instead of his once-appropriate "Rock 'n' Roll!"
Phillip Lindsay is the No. 1 running back on the Texans' depth chart. Hey, where's that running back we got in a trade for maybe the best, most exciting receiver in the league last year? That's him on the bench. Probably soon the injured list.
Up and down the roster, it's not a who's who? It's just a who? The Texans just cut their most famous player – Simone Biles' boyfriend.
Over the next few days, you'll hear sports talk hosts dust off a traditional time-killer, predicting all 17 games for the Texans this season (there won't be an 18th). I'll save them and their listeners the effort: barring upsets that will crunch bookies' private parts, the Texans will lose all 17, an unchallenged record for football futility.
They'll be underdogs each week. They're 3-point dogs at home Week One against a team that won one measly game all last year. Wait till the Texans go on the road to Cleveland and Buffalo. The Texans will be hoping for a Saturday night call from the governor.
All is not bleak for the Texans, however. Why just today the Texans mascot Toro was named NFL Mascot of the Year. It's something.