By Matt Hammond, SportsRadio 610

HOUSTON (SPORTSRADIO 610) — Bill O’Brien has run out of ways to say it.

The Houston Texans front-seven is really good.

“Let’s just say it like it is,” O’Brien said. “You’ve got JJ Watt, Whitney Mercilus, Jadeveon Clowney, Benardrick McKinney, Brian Cushing. It’s a good front-seven.”

Heading into the season opener against the Jacksonville Jaguars, it’s fun to think of their potential. Could they be the best defense in the NFL? One of the best defenses in league history? If things break right, it’s certainly not off the table.

Of course, there’s a lot that needs to break right.

Watt is coming off multiple back surgeries and a lost season. Clowney has had multiple injuries rob him of significant time. Same thing with Cushing — and Johnathan Joseph (who’s 33-years-old) and even Kevin Johnson.

If they can stay healthy, the sky really is the limit.

Ultimately, they’ll need defense to be a strength this season.

Tom Savage has flashed potential, but is still heading into only his third career start, and first as the anointed “starting quarterback.” Duane Brown’s holdout continued on Thursday; who knows when it will end. Will Fuller will be out until at least October. Braxton Miller has struggled to stay healthy.

Can the defense carry the offense?

Will the offense even need carrying?

We start to find out Sunday at NRG Stadium.


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