Bullheaded: Houston Texans Season Preview

Last time on Bullheaded…

Last season, the Houston Texans were both death and resurrection.They went through an abysmal 3-5 start that saw our defense annihilated in one game while the quarterbacks couldn’t find their alarm clock in another. But things turned around in the 2nd half when they came off a bye week and knocked off the then-undefeated Cincinnati Bengals on Monday Night Football, which propelled them to go 6-2 on the year to finish 9-7 on the season and win a sad AFC South. But what was even more sadder, was the 30-0 Wild Card beatdown suffered at the hands of the Kansas City Chiefs.

However, things have took a whole new turn this year. The team may have finally addressed the QB situation and continued to improve the offense. While that front is looking good for now, contract talks loom as DeAndre Hopkins is close to finishing his rookie deal, but has already been declared as a dangerous receiver by players on many teams; teams with big ass bank accounts and perrennial contender status.

Upgraded

The Texans hit 2 key areas for improvement in free agency: quarterback and running back. Of course, Texans have prayed to every god they could for a solid starting QB, such as a Manning, Brees, etc.; but instead we got the heir apparent to the Sheriff, his deputy if you will, Brock Osweiler. To compliment what may or may not occur with him, they went out and got running back Lamar Miller from the Miami Dolphins. Since Arian Foster was let go ( ironically signing with the Dolphins), there will be a need for a starting-caliber RB. Alfred Blue can serve as a great reseverve/short yardage and Jonathan Grimes doesn’t appear to take that role on…yet. So get you a guy who’s still young enough in the position but with some veteran experience.

QB

Brock Osweiler won’t get the same magnitude of attention for leaving his team as Kevin Durant or even LaMarcus Aldridge; but for a shot at the title, he is a cold Hill Country Fare jug of spring water driving to El Paso in August. Yes, even after the possibilities of getting Kaepernick, Brees, RGIII, Stafford and Cutler, Osweiler seems perfect for fans and the team ( more so the coaches).
Those other choices would’ve caused the fan base more division than Bill O Reilly at a Kendrick Lamar concert. People would be arguing over who’s too old, who can’t fit in the system, who’s making too much money, who’s throwing too many picks. As for the team, are the older players a good fit? What if they become successful and win a title within a short time span, but decide to cash in on the glory and retire into the sunset, leaving the Texans on the search again?

Osweiler is the closest thing to drafting a franchise quarterback for the Texans’ immediate needs. He is a 4 year backup, who got his first real starting action last season when Manning was sidelined with injuries. Through those 8 games he played, he had 10 touchdowns, 6 interceptions, and was sacked 23 times. Those numbers aren’t exactly impressive for someone who has been in the league for that amount of time, but it’s not a bad baseline for someone who was just seeing their first taste of actual game action. Given the fact that was the case, many people probably did not agree to the $72 million given to him by the team.

In case you were wondering, here is the good part. The team was in no position to draft a franchise-caliber quarterback in the first round of this year’s draft so they solved the issue before it became that time. Osweiler is a young prospect that can still be molded into something better than what he is. Bill

DeAndre’s Contract

There’s no beating around the bush on this; Texans need to stop playing and pay DeAndre Hopkins. You have your quarterback, now get him a wide receiver who is already here. Figure this shit out because Nuk’s team has already figured it out. They know that as a young deep threat receiver, he will be commanding the thirst of a lot of teams in free agency. There might be a lot of squads with average to good QB’s, who can become phenomenal with a talent like Hopkins at wide receiver. Some of those QB’s might also be young and make a solidified run at a title for years to come, if they sign him.

Hopkins has seen what happened with Andre Johnson in his final years with the team and after, so I’m pretty sure he does not want the same path. Drafting 2 wide receivers in this year’s draft was sort of a plus, in hopes to take away NUk’s defenders in the future, but it is not the final solution. He has to be paid; his contract has to be a priority. DeAndre Hopkins is the truth so get him his money now before the team pays for it in the long run.

Overall, this should be a truly exciting upcoming season for this squad. Last year’s playoff appearance was a combination of late season resilience but also a division that was sort of in the crumbles most of the time. It seems that all of the teams have gotten better in some way, shape or form and this does not exclude the Texans. In Bill O’ Brien’s 3rd year, he will have to challenge this team to actually play like a title contender. It seems like a stretch to ask the losing participant of a 30-0 playoff beatdown to go out and play they’re scheduled for a wishful Super Bowl spot, but the proper adjustments seem to have been made as well.

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