You can say a lot of bad things about the 2013 Houston Texans, but one thing you can’t say is that they’ve quit.
There are a lot of instances where they could’ve just packed it in, but they haven’t. The players deserve a lot of credit for this, but the coaches do as well. Despite all the close losses, and despite the immense amount of negativity from the outside world, the Texans have showed up week in and week out.
I know these are professionals, but it would be real easy for these guys to call it quits, and there have been many instances where they could’ve. Losing close games wears on you. It’s bad enough when it happens once, but to have it happen five straight weeks is awful and gut wrenching. I mean, how many punches to the gut can you take?
It would’ve been natural to see the Texans “lay an egg” on Sunday against the Patriots, but they didn’t. Houston scored the game’s first 10 points and led 17-7 at the half. It took less than seven minutes for New England to take the lead in the third quarter, and the Texans could’ve laid down then too. They didn’t.
Case Keenum and the Texans offense traded punches with a machine-like Pats attack, and in the fourth quarter when the defense needed big third down stops, it got big third down stops, unfortunately, Stephen Gostkowski knocked through two clutch 53-yard field goals. After that, the Texans offense was out of answers.
Case Keenum played his best game in a long time, and after leading just one second half touchdown drive in his first five starts, he led two in this game, but he still wasn’t good enough. He completed just half of his 30 passes, and only 40 percent of his second half throws. That is just too many empty plays, and it’s his fourth straight game completing less than 55 percent of his passes. He, like the rest of the Texans, competed, but as has been the case the last 10 games, it wasn’t enough.
I don’t think he should come back, and it is unlikely that he will, but if Gary Kubiak were to make a case at getting a reprieve it would start with just that, despite all the losing, and all the outside negativity, his guys have played hard. He hasn’t lost them. That could change over the next four weeks, but with nothing left to play for, against a team that’s owned them, the Texans could’ve washed themselves clean of the 2013 season and not shown up on Sunday. They didn’t. That deserves respect, now keep it up for these last four games.
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