The Houston Texans are still in command of the AFC South and the Raiders in command of the AFC West but these are two very different teams.
While the Lions are enjoying their rise in the NFL and enjoying the wins, the Texans are taking their wins very hard and most of the blame falls at the hands of QB Brock Osweiler. Osweiler, who 156 of 268 (58.2%) is currently the 20th ranked quarterback in the league and coming off a 27-9 thrashing at the hands of the Denver Broncos.
Still, the Texans and especially Osweiler have a lot to prove especially that the $72 million contract was money well spent (even at 5.2 yards per pass possession) and Bill O’Brien has no intention of switching quarterbacks at this point.
“He’s a good player,” O’Brien said. “I think it’s very difficult to come into a new system and a new team and just pick it up right away. I think everybody has to do a better job.”
“I think he can play better,” said O’Brien. “I know that the receivers can run routes better. We continue to work and we continue to go down the same inconsistent road, but eventually we have to find consistency or we’re not going to be where we want to be.”
But not all the blame goes on Osweiler and the offense. With the loss of JJ Watt, the run defense has sunk to 29th place in the league after Denver ran up 192 rushing yards on them.
“Yeah, it’s not very good,” O’Brien said of his team’s run defense. “We gave up 190 yards rushing (against the Broncos). I think we all have to do a better job. We’ve got to coach it better. We’ve got to get off blocks better. We’ve got to tackle better.”
“We’re going to have to really study hard here on Detroit and figure out what we need to do to stop the run, because it has to get a lot better,” O’Brien said.
The Houston Texans gambled on a quarterback that had only started seven games in his four years in the league. A $72 million gamble. Now, this Sunday, they will see if the gamble begins to pay off as Brock Oweiler and the Texans host the Chicago Bears in the 2016 NFL season opener. His coach, Bill O’Brien has the utmost respect for his new star.
”He’s come in here and done exactly what we’ve asked him to do,” O’Brien said. ”He’s worked extremely hard … in order to understand our offense basically like a coach does, you have to put in a lot of time. He has certainly done that.”
For the humble Osweiler, the chance to lead a team of his own that has potential to get to the playoffs is all the upside he needed to leave a comfy job in Denver and his confidence continues to soar.
”My confidence continues to grow every single day,” Osweiler said. ”It definitely grows every single time I step on the game field because you can’t really replace anything with game reps, so the more I’m able to (practice) this offense, the more comfortable I become with it.”
The entirety of the Texans nation wanted to see Brock Osweiler this past weekend but with the majority of the Texans’ offensive line missing, Coach Bill O’Brien wisely pulled him after three series’. Osweiler went 4-7 for 27 yards in the 24-13 victory. Osweiler is still learning the playbook in place and pulling him early was a smart move as was running the ball, which they did effectively.
“Like he (Osweiler) said after the game, we kept it pretty close to the vest,” O’Brien said. “We ran the ball quite a bit. We threw some quick game. He had one fade ball to DeAndre that was close. The DB made a really good play on it.
“We came out with a fairly basic scheme, but you know what?” Osweiler said. “No matter what the scheme is, it is our job as players to go out there and execute that scheme and make plays. I’m not going to get into what we did call, what we didn’t call. Bottom line is coach puts in a game plan and it is our job as players to execute that to the best of our abilities.”