Every-Thing Sports

The most insanely positive and ridiculously negative predictions for the Texans

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Every year when the NFL releases their full schedule of games, it's another offseason event that proves the NFL doesn't really have an offseason. Fans and media alike treat it like it's a huge deal. Some fans start predicting their team's potential Super Bowl run and planning road trips to away games. Others start draft previews and contemplate how much energy they'll dedicate to their hapless team. The media goes even crazier. NFL Network and ESPN each have schedule release shows that last two hours or more.

This brings me to the local NFL franchise. The Houston Texans are a team that could've been in the AFC title game last season. With the recent roster moves, they could also be headed for disaster. This team is at a very volatile point. It's almost as if they could boom or bust. While their schedule has some heavy hitters to start off with, it ends on a much lighter note. Let's take a look at the potential varied outcomes:

Insanely Positive

The Texans have a decent amount of talent on both sides of the ball. Sometimes, things align and a team clicks on all cylinders. If that happens with this team, I could see a 13-3 or 12-4 season, Deshaun Watson winning league MVP, J.J. Watt returning to DPOY form (finishing 3rd for the award), and Bill O'Brien winning coach of the year. Unfortunately, the fairy tale comes to an end courtesy of a questionable Lonnie Johnson pass interference penalty (which isn't reviewed) that puts the Seahawks in position to win Super Bowl 55 via a game winning field goal. Watson proves he's worth every penny of the 5yr/$185 million-dollar extension he signed prior to the season starting.

Ridiculously Negative

Whenever you make bad investments involving your future, it eventually comes back to haunt you. Armed with tons of cap space, poor draft capital, and an abundance of overpaid and/or undeserving contracts, the Texans fall into a pit of despair. After starting the season 1-7, Cal McNair is forced to give O'Brien the dreaded "vote of confidence" during the team's bye week. With the team 2-12 entering their week 16 game against the Bengals and rookie quarterback Joe Burrow, McNair announces Bill O'Brien won't be back next season. The salt in the wound: the Dolphins use the Texans' picks to fortify their team around Tua Tagovailoa. When it's all said and done, the Laremy Tunsil deal catapults the Dolphins to greatness and is known as the millennial version of the Herschel Walker deal.

Another Scenario

There won't be a 13-3 or 2-14 season. In fact, the Texans will most likely go 9-7, end up in one of the lower playoff seeds, and lose a road game on Wildcard Saturday. O'Brien will keep his job for another season. He unexpectedly "retires" due to health concerns following the 2021 season. The McNairs bring back Rick Smith as a consultant to advise them on navigating their next moves. He gets them to hire Eric Bienemy as head coach, Martin Mayhew as GM, and stays on as special adviser to the owner.

What I Really Think

I'm not saying any of this will or won't happen. These were simply my thoughts on either side of the spectrum, with my true feelings at the end. Gun to my head, they'll go somewhere between 10-6 and 7-9. I'd rather them make the playoffs given that they don't own their high draft picks. O'Brien isn't going anywhere any time soon, so people might as well root for him to succeed. I'd like to see him succeed long enough until he can be replaced and a new regime comes in with a full complement of draft picks. Until the ball is on the kicking tee, all we can do is speculate and opine. Here's mine. What's yours?

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After the big offensive showing to take the opener on Thursday, the Astros entered Friday's game at Globe Life Field against the Rangers just one win or Angels loss away from securing their spot in the playoffs. Here is how the game unfolded:

Final Score (10 innings): Rangers 5, Astros 4.

Record: 29-29, second in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Brett Martin (1-1, 1.98 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Enoli Paredes (3-3, 3.05 ERA).

Urquidy goes seven while allowing two

The Rangers would strike first in Friday's game, getting a two-out solo home run against Jose Urquidy in the bottom of the second to grab the early 1-0 lead. Urquidy did relatively well on the night, though he would allow another solo homer in the bottom of the fifth. Those were the only two runs he allowed, working in and out of some trouble throughout the game on his way to finishing seven innings. His final line: 7.0 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, 2 HR, 98 P.

Houston grabs their first lead late

Unlike their hot night at the plate the night prior, it took the Astros until the fifth inning to get on the board. It came after Carlos Correa hit a leadoff single, then came all the way around to score on an RBI-triple by George Springer, making it a 1-1 tie at the time.

After the Rangers went back in front 2-1 in the bottom of the inning on their second solo homer of the night, Alex Bregman would tie it up again with a solo home run of his own, making it 2-2. Houston would get their first lead of the night in the top of the eighth, with Altuve working a leadoff walk before scoring later in the inning on an RBI-single by Yuli Gurriel.

Rangers get the walk-off to keep Houston waiting for playoff bid

After Urquidy, Blake Taylor would take over on the mound in the bottom of the eighth, retiring the Rangers in order for a scoreless inning to hold the one-run lead. Still 3-2 in the bottom of the ninth, Houston turned to their closer, Ryan Pressly. After two quick outs, he would allow a game-tying solo home run, making it 3-3 to postpone Houston's celebration at least another inning as the game headed to extras.

In the top of the tenth, Jose Altuve was placed on second as the free runner. He advanced to third on a groundout to start the inning, then scored on a sac fly by Alex Bregman, making it a 4-3 lead for Houston. Enoli Paredes would load the bases before Texas would tie the game on a sac fly in the bottom of the inning, keeping runners on second and third. Houston made the change to Brooks Raley to try and extend the game another inning, but instead, the Rangers would get the walk-off win, spoiling Houston's chance to clinch their playoff spot themselves with a win.

Up Next: The third game of this four-game set will get underway at 6:05 PM Central on Saturday. On the mound for Texas will be Kyle Gibson (2-6, 5.87 ERA), and, as of now, the Astros still have Lance McCullers Jr. (3-3, 4.24 ERA) listed as their starter.

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