After our divisional season review podcasts, we are now looking to the future and asking where each franchise goes from here. We put ourselves in the chair of being GM or the owner and going over what moves we would make in order to win a Superbowl, make the playoffs or just regain some pride…
Today we take a look at the Houston Texans.
Ben Rolfe joined us to talk about the Texans’ season in our AFC South Exit Interviews podcast a few weeks ago, why not go and check that out too?
How Did Last Season Go?
Well, a story of two halves really (well, 1 quarter and three quarters to be exact).
First 4 games, the Texans were staring down the barrel of 0-4 until Frank Reich hands them an overtime victory with one of the more questionable decisions of the year, going for it on 4th down inside their own territory and who’d have known that at that point both teams would’ve made the playoffs. That sparked a 9 game win streak to put them in control of the division. A few wobbles at the end vs those pesky Colts and the Eagles but it was a fairly comfortable division title in the end for DeShaun Watson and co. 11-5 gave them the #3 seed when at moments, it looked as though the Texans could snatch the #2 seed.
However, they were to meet the Colts once more at home and were comfortably beaten in the Wildcard round.
If you asked Texans fans what they would take at the start of the season, you’d probably be looking at around what they achieved, maybe a divisional round game.
The Texans have picks 23, 54, 55, and 86 in the first 3 rounds of the draft.
After the Free Agency Frenzy, the Texans have the 3rd most cap space (excluding Clowney’s Franchise Tag) at this point.
Not much in the way of outgoings for the Texans.
Make your own mind up on whether that is good or bad.
Demaryius Thomas has been cut…moving on.
A few ins for the Texans, mainly on defence. Two CBs in Boddy-Calhoun and Bradley Roby are in, as is Safety Tashaun Gipson. Expect the Offensive Line to be beefed up in the coming weeks and months to help DeShaun Watson take less than the record setting 62 sacks (hopefully no bus journies to Jacksonville next season).
Outlook for Next Year
DeShaun Watson enters his third year as the signal caller and they will have to face a division winner’s schedule. They’ll be expected to sure up the offensive line for their franchise QB and also hope for more health from the likes of breakout star Coutee and Will Fuller in order to keep Hopkins, one of the best in the league, free from double coverage. If all these things happen and the O-Line improves, expect another divisional title for Houston and as a real shot in the dark, DeShaun Watson in the conversation for MVP *John Cena Audience GIF*
Star DE JJ Watt is getting into the back nine of his career so will want to keep making lasting impressions for the City which he holds dear to his heart but it is going to be a tricky division once again and it will most likely come down to the divisional games vs the Colts to decide division winner (don’t @ me Jags fans).
Even before we know what the offensive line is going to look like in Houston, it would be a fairly big shock if the Texans don’t make the playoffs in 2019 but with such a tricky division, they’ll need Watson and Hopkins to be at their best and the Offensive line to not be a cheese-grater. As a whole, the top half finishes for offence and defensive ranks stand them in good stead despite the few injuries here and there that they had so I think they get to 9 wins… just depends if that is good enough for a playoff berth. Looking forward to seeing if they face the Colts in a week 17 tussle.
DeShaun Watson – mid round draft pick – around the QB4-8 range
Lamar Miller – 5th round pick – RB2
DeAndre Hopkins – 1st round pick – WR1
Will Fuller – 6th round pick – low WR2/high WR3
Keke Coutee – late round flyer – WR4 with WR 3 upside