Houstons Texans 2018-19 Preview
I know we have all been celebrating the return of football for over a week now. But if we’re being honest, we all know that football is not fully back until week 1 of the NFL season. Well it’s here folks, so celebrate away. Here, I will be celebrating by sharing my thoughts on the Houston Texans 2018-19 season. So lets go!
The 2017-18 Texans may have been the most fun 4-12 team in NFL history. They had about a month in half run where they were absolutely must watch TV. Once Deshaun Watson took over the starting QB job from Tom Savage, Texans fans got to watch a legitimate QB for the first time sense before Matt Schaub lost his eye sight. For 6 weeks or so Deshaun carved up defenses through the air, and some on the ground as well. He went toe-to-toe with Tommy GOAT in an exciting shootout vs the Patriots, ran all over the Bengals, and torched the Legion of Boom defense in Seattle. Unfortunately, that game in Seattle would be his last of the season, as he suffered a torn ACL during practice the next week. But seeing the way he moved this offense during that stretch has Houston fans as excited as they have ever been. For this upcoming season, Watson is back and has weapons all over the field. At WR, Deandre Hopkins has solidified himself as a top 3 player at his position. Will Fuller V showed outstanding chemistry with Watson last season, and the Texans drafted slot receiver Keke Coutee out of Texas Tech. Coutee has allegedly been a standout in training camp. Despite a mid-camp injury, he will likely be a factor, along with Bruce Ellington, in the slot this year. At RB, Lamar Miller returns as a consistent presence in the back field. Health and age could be a factor for Miller this year, so it’s important that second year back D’Onta Foreman gets healthy (he’s currently on the PUP list). Short yardage back Alfred Blue could be a factor once again this year as well. The biggest issue for the Texans offense this year will be the offensive line. A handful of high draft picks have not worked out for the Texans Oline over the past couple of seasons, leaving a thin and inexperienced group tasked with protecting the young superstar at QB. If the Oline can step up, this might be the most explosive offense in the league.
Defensively, health might be the only concern. Romeo Crennel is back at DC after taking a season off. While Mike Vrabel was an easy guy to root for, I think the Texans defense is in better hands with Crennel in stead. There is plenty of experience in the defensive back field. Veterans Jonathan Joseph and Kareem Jackson are back (Jackson now at Strong Safety), offseason additions Tryann Mathew (FS), and Aaron Colvin (CB) will play major roles, and Kevin Johnson (CB) is back and will play a big role if he can stay healthy. I’m really excited to see this group, mostly because of the Honey Badger, Tyrann Mathew. The front seven may be as talented as any front seven in the NFL, if (and this is big if) they can stay healthy. Superstar DE JJ Watt is back and says he feels as good as he ever has and OLB Whitney Mercilus is back as well. They’ll be rejoining pro bowl OLB/DE Jadeveon Clowney (coming off of his best season as a pro) and a duo of solid ILB’s in Zach Cunningham and Benardrick McKinney. This is a defense that struggled defending the pass last year, but despite losing 2 key pieces up front ranked in the upper half of the league in rush defense. A fully healthy Texans defense could be a nightmare for the rest of the AFC. I expect minor improvements against the pass, but the front seven will hold teams well under their averages in the run game this year. This is a really good defense.
The schedule overall is fairly easy, and I do think health will be on the Texan’s side this year. Having said that, I think the Jaguars remain the favorites to win the AFC South. The Texans can make a playoff run, but I’ll tamper my expectations a bit and say they go 10-6, earning a Wild Card spot in the playoffs.
There’s a really cool website called NFLpredictors.com. This site allows you to go week by week through the regular season picking games, and it does all the standings/tie breakers for you. Once you finish the regular season, it will show you what the playoffs would be based off of your predictions, then you can predict the playoffs. Here’s what I came up with…
There you have it… Rams over Cheifs in the Super Bowl, book it!
But also, I have no idea what’s going to happen, so don’t hold me to it… Football is back! Enjoy it folks!