Ravens 41, Texans 7

Texans vs Ravens: Good, bad and ugly

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In a matchup of potential MVP candidates, Deshaun Watson was outdueled by Lamar Jackson as the Ravens smashed the Texans 41-7. Here's how I saw the bloodletting:

The Good

-DeAndre Hopkins caught his 600th pass in the first quarter. Hopkins is the second youngest to catch 600 passes behind Larry Fitzgerald and the second fewest games behind Odell Beckham Jr. Incredible company to be listed with, especially considering Hopkins has played with subpar quarterback play most of his career.

-Carlos Hyde's 41-yard touchdown run was the play of the day for the Texans. It was a zone run to the right side of the line. Hyde saw a crease open, hit the hole after a slight cut to his left, and mashed the gas to the end zone. Whether it was lack of care or a business decision, a couple Ravens defenders declined trying to tackle Hyde in the open field. He did juke one defender, but Earl Thomas looked to make a business decision.

-AJ Moore Jr deserves some love. He was an undrafted rookie free agent who signed with the Patriots, but was picked up by the Texans last season, made the 53-man roster, and led the team in special teams tackles. He's leading the team in that category again this year. He made a tackle on a fake field goal in the first quarter on a fourth and four. Special teams players deserves some love, especially those that went undrafted.

The Bad

-Watson fumbled on their first possession. He managed to escape the pass rush several times while trying to make a play down the field, but was ultimately sacked and fumbled. His ability to escape and make a play got the best of him and it cost the Texans points as they were driving. The Ravens ended up missing the field goal, otherwise this would've been an ugly.

-The ended the first half with only 102 yards of total offense and gave up five sacks. Some of those sacks were on Watson for not getting rid of the ball. The Ravens defense made the Texans offense look completely inept in the first half. That 102 was the lowest in a game started by Watson.

-Missed tackles led to too many big plays for the Ravens. I know Jackson is as slippery as a fresh caught fish dipped in baby oil, but Mark Ingram and Mark Andrews aren't exactly the most nimble or fleet of foot guys. Justin Reid and Zach Cunningham were amongst the most egregious offenders on the Texans defense, but those were the ones I saw look the worst and certainly not alone.

The Ugly

-The NFL needs to do something about the refs not overturning obvious pass interference challenges. DeAndre Hopkins got his jersey pulled, grabbed, and was turned before the ball got there on a shot to the end zone on a fourth and two in the first quarter. How they could watch that play in slow motion and not rule it pass interference is beyond me. Conversely, Lonnie Johnson Jr got called for one early in the third quarter for a slight push to Hollywood Brown.

-It may be time to bring in some other kickers. Ka'imi Fairbairn missed his fifth field goal this season at the end of the first half. A 43-yard field goal isn't a gimme, but it should be far more routine than what it is for Fairbairn. He doesn't have the yips, but it's in his head and his confidence is shot.

-The Texans had just as many point as sacks given up (7). They were outgained by 245 yards and sported a paltry -142 rushing yardage differential. Oh, don't forget the two turnovers committed by Watson. This whole damn game was UGLY!!!

"This game should've been flexed to Sunday Night Football!" "How come they're playing at noon? This is a prime time game!" Yeah, right. This was the kind of game that would have been better off taking place at midnight on a Tuesday in Croatia it was so terrible. The Texans were again outmatched and appeared to be out-coached by a better opponent, They're 0-1 after the first game of a crucial three game stretch of their season. Here's to hoping Thursday Night Football versus the Colts at home turns out much better for them. Time to go back to the drawing board.

Could next season be the one for Watson? A few have done it before in year four

Watson could join elite company with Super Bowl run in fourth season

Deshaun Watson was magical in the win. Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

The Countdown to "Mahomes Magic" vying for Lombardi's Prize is rapidly approaching. His arrival and amazing ascension to becoming the "face" of the NFL has been meteoric in nature. So the obvious question for us in Houston, is "how" can Deshaun Watson next year land on center stage representing the AFC at next year's Super Bowl at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa? For Deshaun, he'll be entering his fourth NFL season. Have no fear Texans fans, there have been a handful of quarterbacks who have won an NFL Title in their fourth campaigns.

January 12th, 1969 - Joe Namath

​Joe Namath in his 4th season, was an 18 point underdog, led the Jets to one of the games biggest upsets, beating the heavily favored Colts by a score of 16-7. What made this even more remarkable, was that the Colts in the previous round had defeated the Cleveland Browns by a score of 34-0. Namath was not "amazing" that day, completing 17 of 28 passes for a mere 206 yards, but it was "enough" to claim MVP honors at the Miami Orange Bowl. The Jets failed to defend their title the following year, eventually losing to Hank Stram's Cheifs in Super Bowl IV. (The last time Kansas City appeared in a Super Bowl contest)

January 26th, 1986 - Jim McMahon

​Jim McMahon "The Punky QB" aided with Buddy Ryan's famed 46 Defense, and a the league's #1 rushing attack, trounced the New England Patroits in his 4th NFL Season by a score of 46-10. A late hit by Charles Martin during the 86' Regular Season resulted in a separated shoulder, placing Mad Mac on the shelf, and essentially ending the Bears quest for a repeat.

February 3rd, 2008 - Eli Manning

Similar to Namath and the Jets upset in 69', this game is regarded as one of the greatest upsets in NFL History. New England was installed as a -12 point favorite on this day and were chasing perfection, having completed a perfect regular season, and post season. Eli Manning in his fourth year pulled off the miracle, as the Giants were merely a wildcard entry into the playoffs. Prior to this upset, a NFC Wildcard had never captured a Super Bowl Title. Eli threw for 255 yards, and a pair of touchdowns, the most memorable coming in the final moments when David Tyree made the remarkable "helmet catch" in a 17-14 upset victory.

So Houston, fear not !!! A QB can take a franchise to Super Bowl Glory in his 4th season!!!! Or in the case of Patrick Mahomes, possibly as early as a third!

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