The Houston Texans entered their bye week last week undefeated at home but with plenty of holes that needed to be addressed. They came out of the bye week with a divisional game against the last place Jacksonville Jaguars. While Houston struggled at times, they put away the Jags 24-21 to hold their lead in the AFC South but, still look like they have some problems to fix. Here is a look at the Houston Texans team grades following their AFC South win over the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Houston Texans quarterback Brock Osweiler made no mistakes in this win, and that is a huge point to make. However, at the same time, he wasn’t asked to do much and was allowed to take the game in baby steps. Osweiler threw the ball 27 times, completing just over 50-percent of his passes, for only 99 yards. Despite the minuscule 7-yards per completion, he did throw two touchdown passes in the game.
Lamar Miller helped to eat up the clock, carrying the ball 15 times for 83 yards, although 45 of those came on one play. Sadly, while 83 yards is nice, averaging only 2.7 yards per carry on his other 14 runs is not what the Texans were hoping for when they signed him this past offseason. DeAndre Hopkins led the team in receptions with five, but only finished with 48 yards. It was a sub-par performance that can only be praised for committing no errors.
The Houston Texans defense is not just playing well without J.J. Watt—they are exceeding all expectations. On the fifth play of this win, Kareem Jackson intercepted a Blake Bortles pass and returned it 42 yards for a touchdown. After that, the Jags tied up the game but never took the lead once in the loss. Whitney Mercilus intercepted a Bortles pass later in the game, the Jags quarterback’s sixth interception in the last five games.
Allen Robinson did catch nine balls for 107 yards and a touchdown against the Texans’ secondary, but Houston buckled down after that to secure their win.
Special Teams: C-
This could have been an F if not for one punt return. In the third quarter, the Jaguars went three and out and punted the ball from their own 16. Tyler Ervin took the punt and returned it 57 yards to set up a one-play touchdown drive for the Texans. Outside of that, the only other positive is that Shane Lechler averaged 46 yards on three punts, including pinning one inside the 20. Kicker Nick Novak missed two field goals in the game and is now 18-of-21 on the season with a missed PAT earlier in the year as well.
The Houston Texans do not seem to trust Brock Osweiler to take too many chances. They are keeping him on a very short leash and he’s throwing dink and dunk passes, which is not what a quarterback making the money they paid him should be expected to do. They are getting little performance from Osweiler and Lamar Miller, but they are winning games. This was the team’s first win on the road this season and they look like the team that can win the AFC South at this time.
Winning their first road game was huge for the Houston Texans. Up next for the team is a huge game against the Oakland Raiders in Mexico City on Monday night. The Raiders are one of the best teams in the NFL at 7-2 and will be coming off their bye week. This is a game that could determine a home field opportunity in the playoffs between two division leaders and might be the game to watch in Week 11.
Post Author: Shawn S. Lealos.