Every-Thing Sports

With their first-round pick in the NFL Draft, the Houston Texans select...

Is it already time to look ahead to the NFL Draft? NFL.com

So the Texans are 0-3 on the season and things don’t look too promising. Deshaun Watson looks out of sorts. Jadeveon Clowney, Whitney Mercilus, D.J. Reader, and several other defenders have only been seen on milk cartons as they’ve all been reported missing. The offensive line is simply offensive. To top it all off, head coach Bill O’Brien went Gary Kubiak in his post game presser with the “that’s on me” crap. This team is a dumpster fire with gas constantly being poured on it every week. The only good thing is the fact that owner Bob McNair hasn’t said anything inflammatory in months, although he did re-sign O’Brien to an unnecessary extension.

So what now? 0-3 teams have about a three percent chance at making the playoffs and about a one percent shot at winning their division. This isn’t going to be a tombstone moment like the 2005 Astros. The new reality facing Texans fans is now setting your eyes upon the upcoming draft. I know there are 13 more games left this season, but do any of you really think this team has a shot? Let’s take a look at positions of need for the upcoming draft:

Offensive Line

Same position was a need a year ago. Ever since Duane Brown left, it’s been terrible. Jonah Williams of Alabama, Greg Little of Ole Miss, and Dalton Risner of Kansas State are three of the names in this group I’ve seen consistently listed as first round picks. Do you think Martinas Rankin and Julien Davenport are the answer? Do you want to see Watson in a wheelchair?

Cornerback

Jonathon Joseph is old enough to live in assisted living facilities. Kareem Jackson can’t run with the people Joseph would be living with. Aaron Colvin is like a 40 degree day. Kevin Johnson should get an injury settlement and be sent along his merry way. LSU’s Greedy Williams, Penn State’s Amani Oruwariye, and Georgia’s Deandre Baker are amongst the top corners out there.

Edge Rusher

“Why do we need and edge rusher? We have Watt, Clowney, and Mercilus!” That is exactly why you need an edge rusher. Watt will be 30 next year even though he’s slowly rounding back into form. Clowney is looking more and more like trade bait or a compensatory pick if they don’t resign him. Mercilus will be 29 next season and isn’t looking anything like his former self. Ohio State’s Nick Bosa, Clemson’s Clelin Ferrell and Miami’s Joe Johnson all have the body-type to play outside linebacker in this system. How well they adjust to a two-point stance could determine a lot.

I could also list inside linebacker (Benardrick Mc Kinney and Zach Cunningham have been exposed), wide receiver (Will Fuller is coming along, but can’t be counted on just yet), running back (Lamar Miller doesn’t strike fear in anyone), and quarterback (Watson needs a capable backup). O’Brien isn’t going anywhere any time soon. The roster needs an overhaul. Good thing they have their first and second round picks in the upcoming draft (two second rounders if you count Seahawk’s pick from Brown trade). GM Brian Gaine and O’Brien will have a ton of work to do this offseason. I truly hope they right the ship this season and keep it going for years to come. There’s only so many times I can write about this moribund franchise wallowing in mediocrity.

 

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A WEEKLY REVIEW OF O'BRIEN'S COACHING

Not my job: Texans no match for the Ravens

Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images.

The Texans fell to the Ravens 33-16 in a game they had a shot at winning. Most of you reading this will probably think I'm crazy for saying that. I assure you, I meant what I said. One of the reasons they didn't was because Bill O'Brien made a few questionable decisions that cost this team.

The first was the 4th & 1 decision. Deciding to go for it was bad enough. They were down 3-0 near the end of the first quarter with the ball on their own 34-yard line. This is not a situation that calls for a gamble or statement play. The play call itself was okay I guess: a play action bootleg with two short options. It was read and played perfectly by the Ravens defense. Deshaun Watson had nowhere to go with the ball and had to throw it at Darren Fells' back before getting sacked. That led to a quick Ravens touchdown and an early 10-0 deficit. I seriously think he has PTSD after that playoff loss to the Chiefs when it comes to fourth down calls. Bumbling Bill strikes again!

When they got the ball back, they scored a touchdown thanks to more play action passes and pre-snap motion. It was as if Bumbling Bill realized his offensive line was outmatched by the front seven they're opposing. Sure Watson is mobile and looks like a magician escaping sacks, but misdirection helps throw the defense off and keeps Watson from breaking into 177,000,000 pieces. Oh, and the quick reads were a good idea as well. Too bad Bumbling Bill went away from that and opted for longer developing routes. Or will he blame it on Timid Tim Kelly? Or was Waiting Watson holding onto the ball too long? I blame all three.

Also, can we stop starting drives with the predictable run, run, pass combo please? First down should be play action rollout with Watson having the ability to choose to run if it's there. More run/pass/option plays need to be called as well. Incorporate more things that we saw when Watson was on his way to winning rookie of the year before his knee was sacrificed for the Astros.

Credit where it's due: the end of the first half to get a field goal with a minute and change left was good to see. Typically, these situations tend to make Bumbling Bill come out. I liked the quick slant to Cobb with no timeouts. They were able to spike the ball and get the field goal up.

The game was still within reach at 23-13 in the beginning of the fourth quarter. On a 4th & 1, they gave up a 30 yard touchdown run on a direct snap to Mark Ingram. I saw gaps on both sides of the defensive line pre-snap. Sure enough, Ingram got a lead block from the Ravens human plough of a fullback and that effectively put the nail in the coffin at 30-13. I know the tendency is to quarterback sneak or run up the middle, but don't leave gaps along the defensive line trying to stack the middle. First time defensive coordinator Anthony Weaver will take the L on this one.

Overall, I'll give O'Brien and his coaching staff a C- this game. Mistakes were made that could've cost them a legit shot at winning, but the Keke Coutee fumble return for a touchdown wasn't their fault. The play calling menu was brought to us this week by Craft Pita via the "What's Eric Eating" podcast. Tune in next week for another "Not my job!"

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