Though I was born in Mexico and lived in Houston for four years as a kid, thus branding myself a Houston sports fan for life, I've spent the majority of my life in Florida. So, it's safe to say that I'm a warm weather man. I am comfortable in the heat, and I despise the cold. So it's a little bit out of character that I have, in fact, spent 8 years of my life living in places more well known for snow than sweat.
Two of those years were in the Poconos when I was a kid, and two were in Boston for grad school, but four were in Chicago as I earned my engineering degree at Northwestern University.
As I turn on the TV tonight and switch to NBC, I'm greeted by a sight that brings back memories of cheap beer and bad decisions. Ah, Chicago. Has it really been twelve years?!
The vision of cold rain and a generally miserable atmosphere brings back thoughts of many a Wildcat game. Actually, many a Wildcat game are not actually in the memory bank because the alcohol wiped those clean. Why was I drunk? Well, because I was in college, obviously, but also because no amount of sweaters, jackets, or knit caps will keep you warm in that godforsaken weather.
Don't get me wrong. Chicago is a fantastic city. But I'm so glad I'm back in Florida.
I hate waiting all day for football, but at least I took the day off tomorrow, so I won't have to worry about staying up for the game.
Ties suck, let's go Texans!
Leave it to the Rams to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory twice in one OT. They are amazingly inept.
I'd say they got lucky since it looked like the Niners were moving the ball at will almost. The fact that the refs hosed the Rams didn't help matters though.
Smoked some brisket, salmon, chicken, onion, and bacon today. When the chicken was done, I added some homemade buffalo wing sauce, then smoked it for another 30 minutes. MOUTHGASM.
TDC (after Keshawn Martin's non-fumble):
Keshawn's ass saved him.
Vega (after a long incompletion to Andre Johnson):
Love that they went deep there. Kitten the weather.
Draw play on third and long. Who saw that coming?
I hate that play as much as I loved the deep ball.
Why would you ever kick it to Hester? FML.
Brett (after Danieal Manning's forced fumble):
That hit was GQ-esque.
TDC (after the Texans take a 3-0 lead):
Field goals are for l00sers.
There was a 0% chance we'd go for it there.
We absolutely should have gone for it there.
A field goal?
//looks at Rivers//
I understand the field goal. Still really early.
But a touchdown there could have been a knockout blow.
Kitten these special teams so much.
Our special teams are so bad, we've basically resorted to squibbing half our kickoffs lately. Either that, or Shayne Graham's leg is even weaker than I thought.
MDC (after an awesome tackle by Kareem Jackson):
KJAX IS NOT AFRAID OF DEVIN HESTER IN THE OPEN FIELD!
Vega (after another Bears fumble):
Man, I'm glad we heard all that talk about how good the Bears were at forcing turnovers.
Bush just made the cover of GQ.
When he hits you, you stay hit.
TDC (after Schaub's interception):
Keshawn Martin the intended WR on that pass. Nothing good coming from involving Keshawn Martin, it seems.
Are we SURE Keshawn Martin is better than DeVier Posey?
Because at this rate, I'm not sure I'm buying that.
UT (after Danieal Manning's interception):
Somebody done went and pissed off Danieal Manning...
Who needs special teams when we're just giving each other the ball back anyway.
If you take special teams out of the equation, advantage Texans.
//looks at Rivers//
I did say 12-10, for the record.
BFD (after Schaub's second interception and Jenning's non-return):
You can hear a kittening whistle, and Jennings arm hits Casey on the way down and Andre touches his head. If this somehow becomes a TD, it'll be a major screw job.
Schaub can't throw in this weather at all. We need to make some major adjustments on O.
This does not look like two 7-1 teams squaring off.
Two 7-1 defenses and two quarterbacks throwing into gale force winds.
A short pass to Foster in the flat on third and long is Kubiak mixing things up.
I'm so amazingly sick of our third and long playcalling that I wish we'd just punt on those downs and save me the anger.
Know what else would be awesome? OD being healthy and active.
Also, if Joe Marciano caught fire and had to be rushed away, leaving Bryan Braman to call the special teams coverage.
I don't think fire would help tonight. It is raining after all.
Maybe if it were a grease fire or something.
There have been three consecutive possessions without a turnover. New game record.
Goddamn I love the Texans' run game.
In that weather and making a diving catch? Outstanding play, Arian. Holy cow.
For as awesome and talked about as Foster is, he's still kinda underrated because so many people think his success is mainly about scheme. He's a bad man.
Jesus, we can't even squib correctly.
Marciano's one move just got countered. Kitten that dude.
Vega (after Kareem Jackson's interception):
Kareem Jackson has me speechless. Well, he always did, but it's completely different now.
Kareem Jackson played that perfectly. Wow.
I know I'm being a bit hypercritical here, but where the hell is our pass rush? Granted, holding is totally cool this game, but still.
Ice Kareem should have two picks. On a pass he broke up on 3rd and 3, if he hadn't started celebrating, the ball bounced off the Bears WR and would have hit him in the gut.
/remembers Petey Faggins
RE-SIGN KAREEM JACKSON!
I'm actually more scared of Jason Campbell. This means Chicago is going to run, run, run instead of letting Cutler throw into triple coverage.
In Wade We Trust, Tim.
It's not just a saying; it's a way of life.
Wow. We perfectly executed a punt out of our own endzone to Devin Hester. I think someone slipped something into my homebrew.
Kind of! It's just kitten, though.
The rest of this game is about turnovers and field position. Welcome back to 1933 style football.
Feels like home, doesn't it, BFD?
(Alternate joke: BFD was 9 in 1933.)
Perhaps Schaub would throw better wearing a glove.
Marciano called for Donnie Jones to punt it 28 yards. He's got a plan.
It's entirely possible that we are on the verge of the most boring half in the history of football. I'll take it.
By far J.J. Watt's most invisible game of the year. And we're still up by 7.
Vega (after a big completion to Brandon Marshal):
Kittendammit. I miss the boring football.
Again I ask: where the hell is our pass rush? On Marshall's long catch, I believe we rushed seven and didn't get close to Campbell.
Was there ever any doubt that there was a hold on that return?
Oh look....more kitteny special teams. It's not even funny anymore. It's just awful. Flaming garbage awful.
Why in the holy kitten are we still bringing kicks out of the endzone? What data set suggests that it's a good idea for us?
Joe Marciano says, "Data sets are for nerds. I saw a crow fly east today, so we're returning all kicks out of the end zone."
Crap. I have a DirecTV error page on. I'm flying blind right now.
Texans just scored a TD, allowed a TD, and saw three special teams players self-immolate rather than do punt coverage.
Wow, they must be a little slow updating the ESPN Gamecast.
Well, one of those was believable.
You have great field position, a lead, the best RB in the game, and the weather sucks. Run. The. Kittening. Ball.
Don't tell me Kubiak's gone into Vizzini mode again.
My nerves can't take Vizzini mode.
Kubiak is screaming at Schaub about being more like Johnny Manziel.
Did you know that as of this point, Jason Campbell has more passing yards than any other quarterback in this game?
TDC (after the fourth down stop):
Two years ago, this defense couldn't have done that. Domination.
Your Houston Texans have never won a game like that before..true or false?
TDC (not technically answering the question):
On the road, against a quality opponent, in bad weather, with physicality? Never. That's one of the sweetest regular season wins.
That was hardly the Michelangelo of football games, but at the end of the day (and over here on the east coast, it is the end of the day), your Houston Texans are 8-1 and are tied for the best record in football.
The difference in this game was Arian Foster in the first half, and Kubiak and Wade saying, "We're not giving you anything -- good luck beating our defense." Chicago could not.
Offense: Arian Foster. I don't fault Schaub and the passing game for struggling in those conditions, but Foster was the man, and it wasn't just running. Making a diving touchdown catch in driving, cold rain (without gloves) was amazing. I also want to take a moment to say that Owen Daniels was definitely missed. This seems like a game that he would have made a huge impact in.
Defense: Danieal Manning. In a game where the pass rush was pretty much insignificant, the secondary really came out to play. Manning's return to Chicago was about as successful as he could have hoped, even considering the fact that he let what would have been a sure game-ending pick-six slip through his soggy fingers at the end. Well played, Danieal.
Special Teams: Ugh. Um... Trindon Holliday had another kick return... ugh. I noticed Quentin Demps with a few nice plays on special teams, so um... I can't really fault Donnie Jones for struggling in that weather, but I can't reward him either. Ugh. I guess I'll give it to Shayne Graham for a big field goal late, even though he can't even squib a kickoff properly.