For pretty much the entirety of my life as a Texans fan, I've spent every game day following the same approach: sit alone on my couch and curse the will of the football gods with a singular voice. Even when I've been fortunate enough to have a friend or family member join me, they've either never been much of a football fan, or they've been a die hard Dolphins fan and not particularly interested in the Texans.
Today, however, I was fortunate enough to have a very special guest join me for the misery/excitement that is Texans' football. MDC happened to be visiting Orlando with his family and was able to break away for the afternoon to make the hour drive out to the Melbourne area and enjoy a homebrew (or five or six or more) with me as we watched the Texans take on the Jaguars.
So, I would like to extend a very special thank you to MDC and the entire MDC family for the company (though admittedly, the MDC family was probably a little bit grateful for the break).
Unfortunately for you (or fortunately, depending on your perspective), most of the discussion will live on only in the memory of my furniture and my daughter, but some of it did, in fact, make it to this week's Hair of the Dog.
Shaun Cody is out. I'm sure we'll notice this ones of times today.
Jags' pregame radio is a pit of sadness. I love it.
Brandon Harris inactive again. Geez, I'd really like to know why a 2nd round pick can't get active in year 2. Something's not right there.
Either he's pretty bad or Roc is pretty good. One of those.
My guess is that if he's not bumping the top 3 anyway we're going with the best ST players.
Yes, I said best. Why are you laughing?
Roc's inactive, too.
Wait, he is? So we have Alan Ball as our primary backup? ARE WE INSANE?!
It is 68 degrees, without a cloud in the sky, and it could not be a more gorgeous day. Naturally, the roof is closed.
The roof will never open again. Deal with it.
Kickoff reaction. "Wow, Keshawn got all the way to the 15?"
Brett (after Keshawn Martin's touchdown)
Lol...it's not even fair.
TDC (after the first drive):
BTW, Andre Johnson on that last drive? That looked like Andre Johnson. He's looking better every week.
More shocking: the Jags left Andre wide open twice, or Martin actually caught a pass?
Martin not slipping.
Shame dre is not a threat anymore.
Derek Newton blocking nobody alert on that two-yard loss.
I've just accepted that we're replacing Newton in April.
UT (in a moment of foreshadowing):
Sure, TODAY Blackmon decides to remember he's a wide receiver.
UT (in another moment of foreshadowing):
PUT GABBERT BACK!!!
No fair playing your best quarterback.
I'd be fine with losing this game if only to stop the Jags from getting Barkley.
Rivers (cleverly using selective sarcasm after a big Justin Forsett run):
I'd want them to pick Barkley.
Man, really missing Ben Tate now.
MDC (enjoying some homebrew):
Gabbert's career is downgraded to questionable.
UT (after Jacksonville's second TD):
I'm confused, we're not watching 2010's defense play, right?
Oh, Jackson slipped because Reliant's turf is horrendous. Cool.
Can we get in on that lawsuit? I'm sure we could go class action on this if we prove mass psychological trauma.
Jags passing the ball, Keshawn Martin having a good return. I don't know what is happening.
My wife has officially watched more football with MDC in the house than she has with me in the last two years combined.
Author's Note: She said she was just trying to be polite.
Justin Forsett doing his best Ben Tate impression.
So the best thing for Jax's chances in a game is to kill their starting QB?
Sharpton's made as many plays as Bradie James on the season.
AND THE LAWD, HE DID COME DOWN AND HE SAID UNTO KUBIAK, PLAYETH MY NEPHEW! AND KUBIAK PLAYED DARRYL, AND THERE WAS MUCH JOY! HALLELUJAH! LET'S RAISE THE OFFERING!
Running empty backfield when everyone in the building knows it won't work is the very definition of insanity.
Is it more insane than bringing kicks out from seven yards deep?
Or more insane that employing Joe Marciano in the first place.
Vega (after a missed Shayne Graham field goal):
I'm a little impressed that Shayne Graham hit the top of the post. I feel like he should get some points for that.
I'm more shocked that Graham hit that high on the upright from 50 than by anything else that's happened today.
Author's note: Nothing of interest was discussed at this moment. I attribute this to shock at the score.
UT (after Arian Foster's fumble):
Should...should I be worried that I can't feel my left side after whatever the hell that was?
Third and long, inside draw out of shotgun? WHO EXPECTED THAT?
Should have gone empty set. That always works.
It's moments like this that I'm happy I brewed a 7% homebrew.
This beer could be 17% and the game would still be painful to watch.
Rule number one in beating the Jags - DON'T HURT GABBERT.
MDC (after Braman's big hit on special teams):
Bryan Braman has been the bright spot of the second half, and that's for a single hit. Kill me.
The home brew can do that before we can.
So we're down seven to Jacksonville in the fourth quarter. I have nothing else to say.
27 points by the Jaguars. Wow. This is the kind of stuff that creates alcoholics.
MDC (after Keshawn Martin almost broke a return):
Umm...that was a great return...right up until Martin got RUN DOWN FROM BEHIND BY THE WHITE PUNTER!
Yes, "white" matters in this context.
Only Keshawn Martin could get run down by a kicker.
Brett (after Matt Schaub's interception):
OH COME THE KITTEN ON.
MDC has officially worn out his welcome.
Send him home.
If I had any faith that the Texans would pull it out, I'd leave. Sadly, I don't.
UT (just before an 81-yard touchdown pass to Blackmon):
If they give up a first down on third and 21, I am going to be supremely pissed off.
UT (just after an 81-yard touchdown pass to Blackmon):
I kittening hate everything right now.
Justin Blackmon, prior to today: 250 yards total.
TDC (after a Garret Graham TD):
Garrett Graham with 7 receptions for 77 yards and a touchdown. Not bad, but they wasted too much time on that drive.
Garrett Graham. I like him.
Now, how about some more defense. Or, you know, ANY defense.
Andre Johnson's 15th game of 10+ catches and 100+ yards. It ties Wes Welker and Jerry Rice's NFL record.
It's a hell of a feat.
Brett (after Shayne Graham missed a potential game-winning FG):
I...um....what. the. kitten.
I hate Shayne Graham and I hate that Kubiak didn't try to get that ball closer. And I also hate everything.
Caldwell false starts and the Texans miss the FG. I hate Shayne Graham. He shanked it.
Overtime (Note: Not much conversation really happened until the final play):
HAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHA ANDRE JOHNSON WOOOOOOOOO!
I love Andre Johnson. I'd do whatever he said right now.
Phew. Thank you for making me not have to write about Chad Henne, Andre.
Andre Johnson is wondering if anyone thinks he's old and done right now.
I don't know what to do with myself right now.
Drink. Say 80 'Hail Andres.' And drink some more.
If I just told you that Matt Schaub just tied for the second most passing yards in a game in NFL history, would you believe me? Anyone?
When MDC and I finalized the plans of him coming over for the game, I figured we would quietly enjoy a little lunch and a little homebrew while calmly watching a game that would undoubtedly be out of reach by halftime.
To this moment, I can't understand why this game was as close as it was. It seems like everything that could have gone wrong, went wrong, while the Jags caught every break that they could have hoped for. Yet, at the end of the day, the Texans still came out victorious. This speaks to the talent gap between the teams more than a blowout would have.
There's little to be proud of with respect to this game. Ultimately, it's like that day that you hooked up with the fat bridesmaid at that wedding -- sure, that's not the one you go bragging to your buddies about, but at the end of the day, it's still a win.
Let's move on.
Offense: Andre Johnson really deserves this, but how can you not give it to Matt Schaub after the game that he had? 527 yards. 5 TD. 2 INT. And that includes two touchdowns in the last six minutes of the fourth quarter. Yet, somehow, it never felt like he was blowing up the record books. That's a Schaubian game if I ever saw one.
Defense: Nobody on this defense deserves this today, so I'm going to give this to Andre Johnson since he didn't get the offensive one.
Special Teams: Keshawn Martin. Braman had another brilliant day, but Martin had one of the better returning days that I've seen out of a Texans return man in a long time. At one point, I mentioned to MDC that I was more comfortable with Martin returning the ball than I was with the defense on the field. What the hell is going on here?!