HOUSTON (SPORTSRADIO 610) Bill O’Brien and the Texans don’t believe in moral victories. But there does seem to be a sense of optimism after Houston’s 36 – 33 loss to the defending Super Bowl champion Patriots Sunday.
“This team, we’ve got a great group of guys,” said running back D’Onta Foreman. “People that never quit. I see a team out there that didn’t quit. We played ’til the end. We tried to do everything to get a win.”
“The sky is the limit man,” said offensive tackle Chris Clark. “We plan on moving forward and getting better at what we do.”
“The team played their hearts out yesterday,” said defensive end Christian Covington. “And we didn’t get the outcome that we wanted to. But at the end of the day, this is pro football. We’ve got about 12 hours left to sulk. And we’ve just got to get back to film studying, back on the Tennessee Titans.”
“We’re moving onto Tennessee,” said Texans head coach Bill O’Brien. “There were a lot of good things in the game, some things that we have to improve on.”
The Titans were the subject of many offseason hype articles this offseason. After a loss to the Raiders to open the season, they’ve lived up to it. They blew out the Jaguars 37 – 16 on the road two weeks ago, and took down the Seahawks 33-27 in Nashville Sunday.
“Offensively, they run the ball very well,” said O’Brien about the Titans. “They have very good running backs, a big, physical offensive line, big, physical running backs. They do a lot of things well. I think defensively, like I’ve said already, they have a defense that’s a very attacking defense with a lot of athletic players and then on special teams, I mean, they have a lot of good core special teams players. We’ve got our work cut out for us. We’ll meet with our players right now and then once those guys are out of here this afternoon, we’ll get going with Tennessee.”
The Titans are known for their “exotic smashmouth” offense. It features running backs DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry running behind one of the league’s most physical offensive lines. And of course, quarterback Marcus Mariota.
On Monday, I asked O’Brien if the Titans’ physical nature calls for a more intense week of practice.
“I think we’ve got to be aware of the injury report relative to that,” answered the Texans head coach. “That was a tough game yesterday. It was hot up there and offensively, I think we were out there for about 34, 35 minutes. Defensively, not as long, but that last drive took a lot out of our guys. I think we have to just be conscious of that as coaches. But, obviously, we’ve got to have a good week of preparation relative to the team coming in here because like you said, that’s what they pride themselves on, too. It’ll will be a no fare dodging game. That’s the type of game it will be on Sunday.”
Speaking of the injury report, O’Brien said that he’s “hearing good things” when it comes to Texans wide receiver Will Fuller’s chances to play Sunday. Keep an eye out Wednesday.
Sunday’s matchup with the Titans will be the first of three straight home games for the Texans, featuring a Sunday night tilt with the Chiefs and a visit from the Browns before their bye week.
“Yeah, we’ve got a good opportunity,” said O’Brien about the home stand. “There’s no doubt about it. That’s how we have to view it. It’s up to all of us to improve and get better.”
Paul Gallant hosts “Gallant at Night” – Tuesday 9-11 PM CT, Wednesdays and Fridays 8-11 PM CT – on SportsRadio 610. He also hosts SportsZone Unfiltered – Fridays at 10 PM – on The Kube: Channel 57. Get in touch with Paul via email or his facebook page.