The Rundown: Texans vs. Packers
Patrick D. Starr
Talk about a downer for the Houston Texans, the Green Bay Packers put on a show in Reliant with a 42-24 win. A win is being nice, more like a serious wake up call for the Texans and life without Brian Cushing. Everything that could go wrong went wrong on Sunday night and there were not many positives from what anyone could see or at least worth talking about.
- To be honest, Bryan Braman was one of the lone bright spots for the Texans and he did it on special teams by making two tackles and blocking a punt late in the game for a touchdown. He has been on fire since returning from a hamstring injury that had him on the shelf early in the season.
- J.J. Watt had another stellar game, but it was not enough to make a dent in what the Packers defense did offensively. Watt had six total tackles and 2 sacks, giving him a season total of 9.5. He is going to need help on the front to generate pass rush on quarterbacks.
- Andre Johnson put together a quiet game and became the 6th fastest wide receiver to 10,000 receiving yards. Johnson had 8 catches for 75 yards, and it was the first time he was really involved in the offense in some time. It was good to see him back catching passes, but too bad it was in a situation like this.
- Keshawn Martin was a bright spot too, in his first game as the Texans full-time returner. He had three returns for 65 yards and one punt return for 19 yards. He also chipped in 2 catches for 24 yards, and one of those catches almost resulted in a touchdown. Martin flashed his skill set that should be fun to watch these coming seasons.
(Because we would be writing forever about particular players,)
- Penalties killed the Texans' chances, especially DeVier Posey's off-sides penalty and Danieal Manning's three punch combo to a Packer's offensive lineman's face mask. Both led to touchdowns where the Texans were possibly going to surrender three points, but turned into 14. Seven penalties for 69 yards is an uncharacteristic move by this Texans team, and some proved costly.
- People can point fingers at the entire secondary against Aaron Rodgers because he dominated all of them on the field trying to cover Packers wide receivers. Precision passing and great catches lead to 6 passing touchdowns and two Packer wide receivers over 100 yards. Add in....
- Zero pass rush from anyone not named J.J. Watt. There is serious concern for the defense with the lack of push the defensive front is getting in the passing game. The secondary is only as good as the defensive rush and there were times where Rodgers was looking for an open target and had all the time to throw. The secondary can only hold up so much, the pass rush has to do something to help. It will be interesting to see if Wade Phillips has anything in his bag of tricks to dial-up some pressure.
- Add in the offensive issues, they gave up three sacks and let Matt Schaub get beat up the entire night. The offensive line has done a great job of keeping Schaub upright, but tonight the Packers front had them confused. Everything looked off and not one offensive lineman that played for the Texans had a great game. Also losing Antoine Caldwell to a concussion did not help matters for the offense.
- Schaub was rattled and threw two interceptions and had a season low 56.6 quarterback rating. It did not help that the offense could not get into a rhythm, but it was just a bad night.
- Tim Jamison was sent to the locker room with an Achilles injury, an update will come later today.
- Gary Kubiak and his coaching staff were out coached on all fronts. The adjustments in all three phases of the game were not there, and the Packers did not let off the throttle. Kubiak had a tough decision to make on whether to stick to the game plan or try to get into a shootout with the Packers. He stuck with the game plan and the lack of execution offensively did not help. Kubiak usually relies on the defense to get him the ball back, but that plan fell apart and it was a bad combination for the Texans. Out coached on all levels, it was a game the Texans will want to learn from.