- Franchise-best 11 regular season victories.
- Franchise-best six straight road victories.
- Second consecutive and all-time postseason berth.
- Second sweep of Tennessee in franchise history.
- J.J. Watt becomes the first player in NFL history to record 15+ sacks and 15+ passes defensed in a season.
- Opportunity to clinch the AFC South, a first-round bye, and home-field advantage by week 15 with two consecutive victories.
- A Monday Night Showdown between playoff-bound Houston and the AFC East Champion New England Patriots.
Are you with me, BRBers? Need to catch your breath? I understand those feelings because these are exciting times for your Houston Texans. Rarefied air, uncharted ground, entering the wild frontier, you use whatever cliche you need, but the facts are still there: The Houston Texans are 11-1 and setting new standards for the franchise while their players begin to do the same for the record books.
Next up for these franchise-best Texans? A trip to Foxborough, Massachusetts under the Monday Night Spotlight to take on the kings of the 2000s, the New England Patriots, led Golden Boy Tom Brady and noted strategic genius Bill Belichick in a pivotal match-up that could decide home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs. If your beloved Texans want R-E-S-P-E-C-T and national notoriety, the stage is set to grab it by the throat and bring it back kicking and screaming to Houston, Texas.
It is old hat to keep calling back to the dark ages of Casserly and Capers, but it cannot be helped as the Texans keep stampeding on down the road to glory. The decade of facepalms and blacked out Sundays makes weeks such as this taste that much sweeter. Before we get to Monday, we have a duty to get on and off some Texans, so let's take care of that while we are all pumped up and ready for Monday night.
Get Off Arian's 400 Pace.
Arian Foster was once on pace for 400-plus rushing attempts. It was a number that terrifies lovers of running backs and sent chills down the collective back of the fans of the Texans. There is no need to do that anymore.
Yesterday, Foster and Justin Forsett both had 14 carries each. Foster sort of had a light day as the Texans grabbed a big lead early and Forsett proved to be more effective. Now, Foster is on pace for 348 carries, only 21 more than last season, and that is before you factor that A) he has not had as many receptions this season and B) both Forsett and Ben Tate are ready to spell him should the Texans have big leads or meaningless games.
In other words, the workhorse is fine and it seems like Gary Kubiak's ready to rest him and get him set for the playoff grind where Foster's prodigious talents will be needed.
Get On The Backup Bulls On Parade For Stepping Up.
Fifth cornerback Brandon Harris, ye of the inactive list, had a team-leading six tackles and two passes defensed. Sixth cornerback Roc Carmichael BAPped his way to a pass defensed and five tackles. Recent street free agent Barrett Ruud had five tackles and a sack, backup Tim Dobbins had an interception and fumble recovery, backup Earl Mitchell tipped a pass at the line, and rookie backup Whitney Mercilus had two sacks and a fumble recovery in his first start.
The depth of this franchise once again gets shown off as six backups were pushed into starting roles or significant playing time and they delivered. Houston's defense only gave up 10 points to the Titans and pretty much had Jake Locker skittish all game. It is a testament to the front office's building of the roster, the coaching staff's job at development and preparation, and the individual player's ability to be ready at a moment's notice. It is a game to be proud of now and for the big picture.
With Brice McCain a potential free agent, it is nice to know that Harris and Carmichael have some ability to be a safety net. When players get tired and worn down in December and January, it is nice to know that the rotational guys can step in and deliver, too.
Who are you getting on and/or off of, faithful BRBers?
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