Falcon Points

This has to happen for the Texans to win a Super Bowl

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Yes, we will get to that. But today we look at a bigger point, one brought up by Aaron Rodgers.

In a recent interview, he had this to say about our click bait sports journalism world:

"Everybody's trying to say the most outlandish thing possible to get the most click bait. . . . My problem with putting ridiculous headlines on stories is that in this culture where the attention span is so short for many people, even people probably listening to this interview or watching this who can't stay on the entire time because they've got other things to do or other things to look at on their phone.

All they're going to read is eight words on an ESPN front page and . . . that's what these people are trying to get people to click on. One second on that page, that counts as a page view. And the more page views you get, the more ad revenue you get. And I think it's really low-class journalism. Some of the headlines that get put on some of these articles that have nothing to do with what's actually, contest-wise, in the article. I think it's poor journalism. I think it's a total lack of integrity. And I don't want to look at that.

And I don't want to listen to four people on some show, yelling at each other about opinions that, `Do they really feel that way? Or are they trying to be the most outlandish opinion possible so they get the most views when it gets retweeted on Twitter or posted as a 10-second blurb on ESPN.com or something. I just think it's really done a disservice to the industry of journalism, for sure."

He then added this:

"Look man, it comes down to this: If you're willing to sell out . . . and not have any character to stand on, then you kind of get what you deserve. If that's what it's all about with you, if your integrity is worth clicks or likes, then that says a lot about you."

He is absolutely right. Too much of journalism these days is misleading headlines designed to get you to click. We try to avoid that on SportsMap unless making a point, which is what you find with this article.

The other culprit is the people who don't bother to read the articles. I guarantee you someone will comment on Facebook about how ridiculous it is to say the Texans could win a Super Bowl. That person is proving Rodgers' point (and mine).

The reality is both the media and readers are at fault. Readers don't have time, so they read the headline and form an instant opinion. Media outlets know that, so they inflame headlines to get the clicks. Talking heads come up with hot takes so someone writes "so and so says this." They do it for attention. Headline takes are common on TV now, and there is big money in it. The best part is you don't have to think. You can just come up with an instant opinion.

So what do we do? Take time to read the articles. Don't fall for click bait. Yes, I did it to you, but I am also telling you why.

But since I don't want to contribute to the mess Rodgers refers to, yes, the Texans can win the Super Bowl if the key players stay healthy, Kansas City and Baltimore come back to the pack due to injuries or simple regression, and Deshaun Watson takes the next step. That all might be unlikely, but it's not impossible.

There, you have been paid off. You can thank Aaron Rodgers.

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RAVENS 33, TEXANS 16

5 observations from the Ravens win over the Texans

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Let's be honest; the Texans were not going to beat the Ravens. Baltimore has better players, a better quarterback and a better coaching staff. (And oh, a better kicker). All of that was on display in the Ravens' 33-16 win.

The Ravens move to 2-0, while the Texans dropped to 0-2 after facing the AFC's two best teams.

The Texans will still likely contend for a playoff spot, but nothing the last two weeks indicates they are anywhere near contending in the AFC. A look at five things from the Ravens win:

1) Oh, Brien...It did not take long for Bill O'Brien's goofy coaching to rear its ugly head. Down 3-0 at their own 34 as the first quarter was running out, O'Brien chose to go for it on fourth and one. The play was predictably blown up, the Ravens quickly scored to make it 10-0, and the Texans were instantly in a hole against a superior opponent. You can't give points away against the Ravens. They might have scored anyway with a punt, but there was no stopping them with a short field.

2) Some positives on defense. Despite the score, The Texans looked much better on that side of the ball against an explosive offense. J.J. Watt had two sacks, the team had four total, and they kept Lamar Jackson from destroying them. Seven of the points were scored by the Ravens defense, and O'Brien's gaffe led to seven more. The Ravens wore them down in the fourth quarter, but they played well enough until then to keep the team in the game had the offense been better. They did not force any turnovers, however, and that was one of the differences in the game. They were also blown off the ball on a fourth and one in the fourth quarter that led to the Ravens' 30th points and could not stop the run at all in the fourth quarter. But that's what the Ravens do with a lead, and the Texans offense gave them no breaks by being unable to stay on the field.

3) The difference between real contenders...The Ravens were just so much more skilled on both sides of the ball. Defensively, they focused on taking away the run. David Johnson averaged 3.1 yards per carry. Will Fuller had as many catches as you did. The Ravens forced two turnovers on just really good football plays. The Texans don't make plays like that. They might against lesser teams, but if your goal is to compete with the best, it's just not good enough.

4) Deshaun Watson needs to be better. His numbers looked so so on the surface (25 of 36, 275 yards, 1 TD, 1 interception). He was sacked four times and added 17 rushing yards on five carries. He did not make plays late when they needed one here or there to maybe get back in the game. With his big contract, it's time for Watson to stop being close to elite and take the next step. His interception was more of being fooled by Marcus Peters than throwing a bad ball, but the Texans were just 3 of 9 on third downs. Throw in the ill-advised fourth down play, and they were just 3 of 10 extending drives. Give the Ravens a lot of credit, but again, to compete with the best, you have to be better than that.

5) Now what? The Texans travel to Pittsburgh to take on the Steelers, who have not been impressive in their two wins. Still, it's hard to see Houston as anything but serious underdogs. They are last in the AFC South, and have a lot of work to do. The defense showed some promise at times, but will have to continue to improve. The offense has a long way to go. They match up better with the Steelers than they do the Ravens and Chiefs, but that does not mean they can win. If you were hoping they would give you some indication they can be more than just also-rans, they failed to do that on any level against either the Chiefs or Ravens.

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