The Houston Texans are 2-1 currently, but not all things are great for the defending AFC South champions. Not only did the team just recently lose star defensive end J.J. Watt after he re-injured his back, but that defense as a whole has been the main reason for the team being above .500.
When looking at the numbers, the Texans offense has struggled, which is surprising when you consider that they have a quarterback in Brock Osweiler who they paid big money to, as well as Lamar Miller, DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller. Fortunately, change is coming, as head coach Bill O’Brien will begin calling plays again, per John McClain of the Houston Chronicle.
As McClain points out, the Texans are indeed tied for last in the NFL in scoring with the Tennessee Titans at just 14 points per game. They were most recently shutout 27-0 by the New England Patriots in a prime-time game. Through the first three games of the season, Osweiler has averaged just 214.7 passing yards per game, while Miller has averaged a mediocre 3.6 yards per carry.
Back in 2013, O’Brien was the head coach of Penn State, and during that season the team averaged 433 yards per game, while also putting up an average of 28.7 points per game as well. He put together a strong balance of run/pass production, with both averaging totals of more than 174 yards per game.
The hope is obviously that O’Brien can give the Texans offense some type of a boost, and specifically get the likes of Miller, Hopkins and Fuller producing even more than they already are. The three-headed monster that Osweiler has to work with offensively should be more than enough for this team to be a strong offense, which hasn’t been the case to this point in the 2016 season.
The Texans struggled offensively quite a bit in 2015 as well, averaging just 21.2 points per game, ranking them tied for No. 21 in the NFL. To go along with that, everyone also remembers the 30-0 shutout loss they had against the Kansas City Chiefs in the 2015 playoffs, which also came on their home field as well.
That loss for the Texans alone helped to spark their decision to attempt to revamp their entire offense this offseason, which to this point, hasn’t gone as planned. Even just having Hopkins alone, as well as a playmaker at running back like Miller, should be enough to make Osweiler’s life easier, but it was just the opposite against the Patriots. In that game, he completed 58.5 percent of his passes with no touchdowns and an interception.
It’ll be interesting to see if O’Brien is able to do enough to light a spark under this offense, which will desperately need to take their game up to another level in order to help out the defense, especially after losing Watt potentially for the season. The Texans will be at home against the other lowest-scoring team in the NFL in the Titans this weekend, as they’ll look to move to 3-1 on the year.