The Houston Texans took home its first preseason win against the Green Bay Packers in dominant fashion, 26-7. And part of what worked? The head coach.
Starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor was a perfect 4-of-4 passing in his sole series, recording a 108.3 passer rating. Rookie backup Davis Mills looked promising and in control of the offense, throwing for over 100 yards. And the Texans' defense dominated with three forced turnovers.
For a team with several question marks and low expectations from national experts, there was a lot to like. Despite the success, head coach David Culley still sees room for improvement - and maybe that's the best part of all of it.
“We had a lack of consistency tonight at times, but we’ll go review the film … look at it and correct those mistakes and keep trying to get better which is what we’ve been trying to do during training camp,” Culley said.
Houston’s defense only allowed 49 yards on the ground, one touchdown in the second quarter, pressured the quarterback multiple times, and was a takeaway machine. Rookie defensive lineman Roy Lopez and defensive lineman Jonathan Greenard each recorded a sack, cornerback Jaleel Johnson recovered two fumbles and defensive back Tremon Smith recorded an interception.
While Culley acknowledges his team did play “team defense,” there’s an area his unit needs to improve.
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“We had a couple of third-and-longs tonight that I know Lovie [Smith, defensive coordinator] wasn’t happy with … we’ve got to get them off the field in third-and-longs and we didn’t do a good job of doing that,” Culley said.
Rookie tight end Brevin Jordan looks like he’s on the same page with Culley’s “constructive criticism” message. He knows that there’s always something in your game that can get better.
“Great experience. Learning curve, gonna keep chopping wood and continue to stack days,” Jordan said on Twitter after the Texans’ win.
Houston has only played one preseason game, but it looks like the team is buying into Culley and his coaching staff’s philosophy. The win is nice. The believing is even better.