11 observations from the Texans' 31-3 loss to the Colts

Texans David Culley, Davis Mills, Tim Kelly
There were some positives from Davis Mills, despite the loss. Composite image by Jack Brame.
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The Houston Texans lost their fifth straight game as the Colts were far too much for the Texans to handle. Here are 11 observations from yet another Texans loss.

1. There are a few things the Texans had to have liked from Davis Mills in what was his fourth NFL start. Mills whipped the ball into some difficult spots early. The offense moved along well before a play here or there stalled out drives. Another positive overall week for Mills.

2. Mills has much more ability to make a sound decision on the move than he did in training camp and the preseason. Previously this was a big negative, but he has been able to keep his eyes downfield and make sound decisions more than expected.

3. There were negatives for Mills though. He threw a bad interception to Colts linebacker Darius Leonard. There was no chance to complete this to anyone besides Leonard as the All-Pro linebacker perfectly baited Mills. He also tossed a late interception when he didn't nail the throw to Brandin Cooks and instead threw it right to the Colts.

4. David Culley's team burned another timeout trying to figure out what they wanted to do on fourth down. The game was already out of reach, but again simple operation sometimes looks hard for this coaching staff.

5. The success of the punting this week makes the fake punt look even worse from last week. Cam Johnston was blamed this week for mishitting it, but his normal punt setups almost always lead to success.

6. Nico Collins made his return and looked solid in the light action he faced when the game was close. Collins is a small beacon of light to follow in a dark season.

7. The defense did a good job in the first half and then the talent gap and fatigue took over. The Texans were smashed on the ground in the third quarter by stud running back Jonathan Taylor.

8. Jonathan Taylor was drafted one pick after Ross Blacklock. Taylor stands to be a thorn in the side of the Texans for years to come while Ross Blacklock has disappointed in his short time in the NFL. There are around eight different players all drafted after Blacklock in the 2020 second round who have much more significant impacts than the selection the Texans made.

9. Speaking of the running back position, David Johnson had an atrocious game. The Texans need to move on from the lackluster veteran. Johnson was horrid in pass protection and had two fumbles in the game (one was overturned). He is a constant reminder of the beginning of this franchise's dark days.

10. Lonnie Johnson didn't begin the game for the Texans at safety as he was a backup initially behind Terrance Brooks. Brooks left with an injury, and Johnson replaced him. Johnson looked to be picked on by the Colts and allowed some big plays.

11. This isn't a results-oriented season but the Texans are in a race to the bottom when it comes to results. The Lions are the only team regularly looking as ineffective as Houston. The Cardinals, with DeAndre Hopkins and J.J. Watt, welcome the Texans in Arizona next week.

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Kiper has the Texans bolstering their defense in Round 2. Composite Getty, Wiki Commons image.

In Mel Kiper Jr.'s latest two-round mock, he provided insights into potential draft picks and areas of concern for the Texans as they prepare for the upcoming NFL Draft. The Texans currently have two picks in the second round.

When considering the Texans' needs, he selected Illinois defensive tackle Johnny Newton with the No. 42 overall pick and Michigan cornerback Mike Sainristil with the No. 59 pick.

Kiper praised Newton for his exceptional performance as a defensive tackle, noting his impressive 7.5 sacks last season, the most among FBS defensive tackles.

With the departure of Maliek Collins, Newton could fill a crucial void in the Texans' defensive line, providing much-needed pass-rushing ability from the interior.

Another prospect Kiper identified as a potential target for the Texans is Michigan slot cover corner Mike Sainristil.

Kiper hailed Sainristil as the best slot cover corner in the draft, citing his impressive statistics from the previous season, including 6 interceptions, 2 sacks, and 2 forced fumbles. With the Texans' re-signing of veteran corner Desmond King, there is still uncertainty about King's role on the roster, according to Kiper, opening the door for Sainristil to make an impact.

Despite his relatively smaller stature at 5-foot-9, Sainristil's playmaking ability and versatility make him an attractive option for the Texans' secondary. Draft expert Lance Zierlein thinks Sainristil would be a good fit in Houston.

As the draft approaches, all eyes will be on the Texans' front office as they make critical decisions that will shape the future of the franchise.

*AI assisted.

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