The days since Saturday Night have been brutal for Texans fans. I myself, having not even seen the game yet, have been down because of reading the post game coverage and reading reactions around the site. After the progress made in the last couple of seasons, there is no way to explain the Saints game as aptly as Gary Kubiak's description of "A step back."
How do the Texans recover from this? Someone has to be accountable right? DeMeco Ryans says he will accept responsibility for the poor defensive play despite being the one player on that side of the ball that was singled out by Kubiak for his exceptional play."Our performance reflects my leadership," he said, "and obviously, it wasn't good enough." Leadership is an intangible that can't be taught, and DeMeco is showing that he gets it.
Amobi Okoye didn't play well on Saturday night, which led to the Saints gaining an average of over 8 yards on every running play. Some think that Okoye should now be labeled a bust, but others believe he still has time to turn into a good to great player. Most importantly, Okoye realizes what he did wrong the other night and seems like he is learning from it. This will be a long process for Amobi, which is frustrating to the fans, the Texans and most of all himself, but it's not an instantaneous process.
Injuries have hampered the team throughout the preseason. The first thing I wanted to hear following the Saints game was the injury report to make sure that no one else suffered serious injuries. There is good news on that front though. Chester Pitts was back at practice yesterday, and Antwaun Molden will return to full duty this week and might play in the MNF Game against the Vikings. Chris Myers is improving every day and might play next game as well, which would be great to have the entire O-Line be able to play against the vaunted Vikings' run defense together. Brian Cushing is doing drills away from the team, and the earliest he will be on the field is the last preseason game against the Buccaneers.
The other important thing to do in this situation is not panic. There aren't that many bandwagon Texans fans out there, so almost everyone frequenting this site and other Texans-related ones has seen their fair share of downs. We all want this team to live up to it's potential so much that we cringe every time we see evidence that points to the past woes.
I still have faith that this team is heading in the right direction. Did we take a large step back the other night? Absolutely, but that's going to happen time to time. As much as I wish there won't be, there is likely going to be at least one game this season where the Texans will get beat so bad that there will be little to no positive aspects of our performance, just like the other night. In my estimation though, the end result is what is most important, and you don't get there by taking all steps forward; you get there by taking more steps forward than you take backward.
I'm with Tim that the run defense or lack thereof is scary, and that it makes sense to discuss it. I just don't think that all is lost at this point. I recognize that no one is necessarily saying that, but that's prevailing feeling around the blogosphere. I think the quote of the week in the comments belongs to Tyler, a.k.a. bullpen116:
I'm not pushing the panic button... But, not taking my finger of it either.