11 observations from the Texans' 38-22 loss to the Rams

11 observations from the Texans' 38-22 loss to the Rams
Texans lose, 38-22. Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images.

The Houston Texans haven't won since week one, but the team ended a nearly month-long touchdown drought. The Rams crushed the Texans 38-22, handing Houston their seventh straight loss.

1. The Texans defense played their worst game at home of the season. The fundamentals were somewhere between missing and sloppy. There is a severe lack of talent, which is frequently exposed with an often-archaic defense.

2. This was the first game where it felt like there was some quit on the defensive side of the ball. It crept into the performance at one time or another.

3. Vernon Hargreaves continues to play poorly. He was forced into action with Desmond King a healthy scratch for the team. Hargreaves seemed to have forced a turnover on downs but a penalty was assessed to him. The Rams would end up scoring.

4. The defense seems to be outmatched earlier and earlier in games. Sometimes the leaks spring in the second half but this week it was apparent very early on the Rams would not have a difficult day on offense.

5. Cooper Kupp increased his touchdown lead over the Texans as he added his tenth receiving touchdown of the year. The Texans answered late in the game as Brandin Cooks hauled in a Davis Mills pass for a score. Cooks is the lone pass catcher with multiple receiving scores for the Texans. The Texans would catch Kupp late in the fourth quarter as Brevin Jordan caught a pass for a touchdown.

6. Lonnie Johnson had another bad performance at safety. The former second-round pick has a handful of interceptions but on a play-to-play basis, he is very poor in coverage and run support.

7. The offensive line was manhandled by the Rams. One stretch saw the Rams sack Davis Mills four times in five offensive plays. This unit is down multiple starters, but the holdovers at guard in Tytus Howard and Max Scharping have been poor this season.

8. The rushing game was bad with Mark Ingram on the team. It got worse after his departure. David Johnson got the start and had little success. Scottie Phillips was active for the game but also had little success. Rex Burkhead had one solid series late when the Rams had backups in the game.

9. Davis Mills has little chance to succeed with the poor offensive line play. Mills did throw one of his worst interceptions yet though, as he didn't come close to passing the ball over a linebacker, instead allowing the defender to simply reach up and snag the ball out of the air. Mills showed some late life against the Rams when Los Angeles was playing prevent defense. He led three touchdown drives in the fourth quarter.

10. The Texans scored their first touchdown since the third quarter of the loss to the Patriots. Mills moved the ball against a Rams defense playing backups in prevent defense to help set up a Rex Burkhead rushing score. Houston would add two more passing touchdowns and a two-point conversion to stay within the Vegas number.

11. Houston somehow nearly surpassed their ineffective performance against the Bills from earlier in the season, but since the team scored multiple touchdowns, it finishes slightly above the Buffalo beatdown. It was an embarrassing performance for three quarters though, and the team doesn't have much hope against the better parts of their schedule. The Dolphins, one of the potentially winnable games left in 2021, are next.

Most Popular

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome

Listen Live

ESPN Houston 97.5 FM
Astros defeat the Orioles, 5-1. Composite Getty Image.

Ronel Blanco pitched seven strong innings and Chas McCormick homered twice to lead the Houston Astros to a 5-1 win over the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday.

Yordan Alvarez added a two-run shot to help Houston extend its winning streak to four games.

Blanco (8-2), who threw seven hitless innings in his last start, allowed four hits and a run with three strikeouts for his third straight win.

Alvarez put the Astros on top with his 16th homer, which came off Corbin Burnes (8-3) in the third, and McCormick made it 4-1 in the fifth. McCormick got his fifth career multihomer game when he connected again in the eighth.

Burnes allowed five hits, including a season-high two homers and a season-most four runs in seven innings to snap his career-best streak of 10 consecutive quality starts. He was 5-0 in seven starts since a loss at Washington on May 7.

Jordan Westburg homered in the second for the Orioles, who set a franchise record with 21 straight games with a home run to surpass the 1998 squad's 20-game streak.

Baltimore had troubled stringing hits together Saturday after scoring 28 runs combined in the last two games. The top four batters in their order combined to go 1 for 13 against Blanco and Houston's bullpen.

Ryan Pressly threw a scoreless eighth before Josh Hader struck out two in a perfect ninth to end it.

Westburg connected off Blanco with one out in the second to put the Orioles up 1-0.

Yainer Diaz opened Houston’s second with a triple on a line drive to right field. The Astros tied it when he scored on a sacrifice fly by Mauricio Dubón with one out.

McCormick singled with no outs in the third and the shot to center field by Alvarez came with two outs to put Houston on top 3-1.

McCormick’s home run to the seats in left field extended the lead to 4-1 with one out in the fifth.

Cedric Mullins tripled off the wall in center with one out in the seventh. Colton Cowser hit a sharp line drive, but was robbed of a hit when shortstop Jeremy Peña made a leaping catch for the second out. Blanco then retired Ramón Urías to end the inning and leave Mullins stranded.


Astros: RHP Jake Bloss, who made his major league debut Friday night, was placed on the injured list with right shoulder discomfort.


Astros: RHP Nick Hernandez was optioned to Triple-A Sugar Land on Friday night. ... LHP Bryan King was selected to the MLB roster and RHP Luis Contreras was recalled from Sugar Land on Saturday. … RHP Alex Speas was designated for assignment.


Houston LHP Framber Valdez (5-5, 3.91 ERA) opposes RHP Albert Suárez (3-1, 2.05) in the series finale Sunday.

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome