The Houston Texans' 0-4 start to the NFL season meant the dismissal of boss Bill O’Brien, meant rumors of discord in team headquarters and meant some fans were well within their rights spending their Sundays, oh, with their families, or whatever.
But Texans players are not well within their rights to have turned the page to 2021. And wide receiver Will Fuller is trying to prove that they didn't.
"We're just getting started,'' Fuller said.
Ah, but wait. Just as Fuller is "getting started,'' the NFL is putting on the brakes.
Fuller has been suspended for six games by the NFL for a performance-enhancing drug violation, as first reported by NFL Network. Barring a Houston playoff appearance, the suspension will extend into 2021; Fuller is presently scheduled to be a free agent after this season.
"I want to sincerely apologize to the Texans organization and all of my fans,'' writes Fuller, blaming the violation on having put trust in the wrong doctor.
On the field? Fuller has certainly done his part to overcome the early hole and help drive 4-7 Houston to a 4-3 record under interim coach Romeo Crennel. Fuller finished his Thanksgiving day (a 41-25 win at Detroit) with 171 receiving yards and two touchdowns. As it stands, Fuller has 879 receiving yards and eight touchdowns on the year, both career-highs.
Said Watson: "With the deep ball with Will, I just let it ride, put it in the back of the end zone, let him go make a play.''
“Deshaun is playing great,'' Fuller said of the Texans QB helping him look like both of them are Pro Bowlers. "He’s our leader, and we’re going to keep making it happen.”
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To "keep making it happen'' this season, Houston will have to overcome a trio of AFC South games (two against the Colts, one against the Titans) and then handle two foes that are seemingly on their level - Week 14 at Chicago and Week 16 at home against Cincinnati. In theory, continued hot-hand play by Watson and Fuller and company could create the once-impossible scenario of playoff contention for the Texans.
But in any event, they will now have to do it without one of their best players ... who was indeed "just getting started.''