Through two games of the 2016 NLF season, Houston Texans’ quarterback Brock Osweiler has done enough to help his Texans jump out to a 2-0 start. The Texans’ defense has certainly helped, as has the run game. But Osweiler has impressed so far in his first two starts wearing a Houston uniform.
Now it’s his time to put his name on the map.
Osweiler’s name is already a fairly popular one thanks to all the drama that surrounded him at Denver and when he left this offseason. But his play isn’t what has made him talked about thus far. He has a chance to change that on Thursday night.
The Texans travel to Foxboro to play the New England Patriots. This would be a big match-up regardless, but there’s a couple of pieces of news that add even more intrigue to this game.
Patriots’ quarterback Tom Brady is still serving his four-game suspension to start the 2016 season. His backup, Jimmy Garoppolo, had looked impressive to start the season. But now Garoppolo is hurt, and the Patriots are scrambling to find a solution at quarterback ’till Brady comes back. All eyes are currently on the Patriots’ quarterback situation, which means people will be watching Thursday night to see what happens.
Which means there will be plenty of eyes on the Texans and Osweiler too.
Through two games as Houston’s starting quarterback, Osweiler has completed 60.3 percent of his passes for 499 yards, three touchdowns, and three interceptions. Those aren’t eye-popping numbers, but they’ve gotten the job done. The Texans don’t need Osweiler to be a quarterback who lights up the board in order for the team to have success. But Osweiler could very well have one of the better games of his young career on Thursday night.
Osweiler actually helped make a name for himself last season against the Patriots while he was still with the Broncos. He was making his second career start when the Broncos hosted the Patriots in late November of 2015, and the Broncos emerged victorious in overtime, 30-24. Osweiler’s numbers weren’t spectacular, but he did enough to help his team defeat the Brady-led Patriots. Osweiler ended up with 270 yards on 23-of-42 passing, tossing a touchdown and an interception.
Not only does Osweiler already have a history with New England, but this year’s Patriots’ team doesn’t exactly have a top-notch pass defense either.
In the Patriots first two games, they’ve allowed 641 passing yards and four touchdowns to the likes of Carson Palmer and Ryan Tannehill. Granted, the Pats were able to pick off Tannehill twice, but both of those quarterbacks combined to complete 68.3 percent of their passes. And New England has mustered up just three sacks combined in those two games, with all three of them coming against Arizona in the opening week. No only that, but New England’s run defense hasn’t been spectacular, either. Sure, they’re allowing just 81 rushing yards a game, but Arizona and Miami combined for a 4.6 yard per carry average. Both those teams had success against the Patriots on the ground, but they only ran it a combined 35 times.
With the weapons Houston has in both the pass game and run game, the Texans should be able to gain a ton of yards against this Patriots’ defense.
Osweiler isn’t a superstar quarterback. But thanks to the intrigue of this match-up and a weak New England defense, he could put his name on the map during this game.