The Houston Texans came into the 2020 season with more than their share of let downs – but, they had a solid team – scoring just under 24ppg in 2019 – but their passing attack was more of a passing blip with a short game passing attack at just 6.5 YPA. DeAndre Hopkins was not just their best WR, but possibly the best WR in the NFL – he was steadily showing what he could do. on the field – but they traded him off to Arizona – in a weird and very criticized move. They have since had a problem with keeping their WRs to be able to stay on the field. And their veteran, former 1200 yard WR, Brandin Cooks has not been extremely durable performing, with just 3 games of 83 or more yards receiving this season.
The Texans managed to put together a strong 10-6 record in 2019 – putting them 1st in AFC South – then got blown out in spectacular fashion vs the Kansas City Chiefs in the Divisional round. But they have not shown any semblance of hope for this season – and don’t look to be trying for it, either. They have crawled along the gutters in the division only 2 times in the last 8 seasons – so this isn’t a typical year for them
They have no real defensive identity – giving up 28ppg to teams in 2020 so far – including 5 games of 31 points or more. Their best pass rusher, aging, injury riddled, JJ Watt is the leader on the team with just 4 sacks for their defense, and that is nothing to shake opposing QBs all too terribly, as double teams are becoming more effective throughout the season, when needed. This season has been nothing great – as they are muddling along at 2-7, and 3rd slot in the AFC South division.
The team really needs to ask if David Johnson is really going to be the guy they plan on going forward with for the next few years to come? He is perhaps a slightly above average RB in the NFL, and he is far from a superstar by any sense of the word. As he has always shown an instinctual propensity to get injured in critical situations during his 6 year career – having missed more than his share of games in that timeframe, including 15 games back in 2017 – there is not much to question. Johnson on the season, as of now, he has been his typical mundane self, with a mere 51 YDs /game and just 3 TDs. Having only 2 seasons of 4.2 YDs /carry or better running the ball, he is a dead drive waiting to happen. He plays better with a lead, because he’s not at the stage in his career, where he is going to be able to rumble and hold down a team in a majority of games with breakaway speed – and that is truly a terrible quandry to put your team in.
The Houston Texans 2020 year draft picks concentrated on defense – and expected some better return as their guys for the future – Jonathan Greenard has not been on the field an awful lot, which raises questions and Ross Blacklock has not been able to get to QBs. These guys, at the bare minimum, will need time on the field to get a fair judgement from the team. But, in the world of instant gratification, how patient will the Texans or their fiery fanbase be, if they end up showing up as wasted picks after they could have grabbed Jonathan Taylor or Chase Claypool, looking back? Or Antoine Winfield Jr. or Trevon Diggs, if they wanted to build their defense.
The Texans need a better running game, have to be able to stay on the field, and get a stronger defense to be a winner. The Texans ability to keep teams off the field has been nothing short of a disaster – and that is saying more than you need to know. They have had some real punishing problems keeping teams off the field – including their atrocious 3rd down conversion rate, giving up almost 48%. It just looks to me, they didn’t put as much work into what they should have, from what has been seen.
Tennessee has made some improvements over the last couple seasons – with rushing the ball as their strength – they have built an identity with King Henry. The Colts have made some improvements as well, over the last few seasons, with an awesome defense, in particular. Houston needs to get their act together – or upcoming seasons of more disappointment are quickly approaching. 5-6 win seasons are not nearly going to be good enough to be able to hang with the Titans or even the Colts, in the near future.