The Texans-49ers game is fast approaching. It will be coming on at 7:20 pm on NBC network Sunday night. This will be the first Sunday night game for the Texans this year. Last year when the Texans played their first Sunday night game, well.... let's not remember that game. That was one of the most painful nights of my entire night. This however, is a different story. Unlike last year, the Texans are coming into this game cold. They have had two straight losses to a good team and an okay team. This game that the Texans are playing is coming off of a victory by the 49ers, a 35-11 trounce of the Rams. The Texans are coming off of, well..... let's not talk about it either. This is a very interesting matchup of two teams that have largely under preformed despite projections to be great.
I think that Colin Kaepernick has slowly been solved, and Matt Schaub is the best defense for himself. Honestly, I was a big Schaub believer for a long time. I thought he was going to have his best year after that first game. Then, he lead the Texans on a game winning drive in the game against Tennessee. I thought that he was doing a good job of managing his team and his interceptions. Then he had a bad game against Baltimore, but I was just thinking, no big deal. It was all going to be okay. After the first half against Seattle, I thought he was back to his great Matt Schaub form. Then he started to get pressured and we started to see why we all just don't think Matt is the guy that can lead the Texans to the Super Bowl. I thought I could believe in him, but then he decided to try to throw the ball to Richard Sherman instead of taking a sack. Then he just couldn't lead the Texans down the field to win the game. Then he couldn't do it in overtime. We also just kept seeing him falling down without taking a hit. He was just showing all the reasons why people shouldn't believe in him. He can't make plays when under duress and just isn't good enough. Even Peyton Manning can make plays from inside the pocket. The Texans have the least mobile quarterback in the league. He is decent throwing the ball but has to have a great pocket and that just isn't going to happen against teams with good defenses. So besides all this, Matt Schaub is a great quarterback. After the burning Matt Schaub jersey, he obviously isn't going over too well with the Houston fans. Did I mention the fact that someone cared enough to make up a fake trade sending Matt Schaub to the Browns. That made me laugh a nervous laugh. The reason it was nervous was because if someone cares enough to do that, he must be atrocious. I am giving Matt Schaub three weeks to prove that he is worthy to run this offense. He gets to play the 49ers, Rams, and Chiefs. If he can prove something to me, and get wins for the Texans WITH NO PICK SIXES, he will prove to me. Also, he needs to keep up good play and beat some good teams. As for Colin Kaepernick, he has been inconsistent and it has showed a major flaw of his, he needs his weapons. If Frank Gore isn't rushing well and his receivers are covered, he can't make plays. Unlike Russell Wilson, he does a lot of planned running even, but can escape the pocket unlike other quarterbacks in this game. Cough, cough MATT SCHAUB. I know that Colin is good but he needs to show that he can use the weapons in Anquan Boldin and Vernon Davis to his advantage. However, if the Texans can shut Anquan and Vernon down, I think Kaepernick will have trouble. This quarterback matchup is tough.
Running Backs vs Run Defenses
Arian Foster is coming off of a breakout performance against the Seahawks who have a very good run defense. Frank Gore is coming off of a breakout performance as well, except his was against a very weak run defense in the Rams. I think that the dual running back threat that the Texans have is very good. Even though the individual stats have not been the best for Tate and Foster, their combined totals are amazing. The splitting of carries is bothering both backs, and I think Foster earned carries last week. The reason I remain hopeful that the Texans won't have to completely rely on Matt Schaub is the fact that the Colts didn't have to rely on Andrew Luck in the game during week 3. I think that if the Texans can open good holes like the Colts did, and eliminate the run stoppers in Navarro Bowman and Patrick Willis they will have a very successful game against the 49ers. On the other side of the game, the Texans run defense was stout last week. After a long run by Marshawn Lynch early in the game, the Texans really shut him down the rest of the game. When Brian Cushing left the game, the Seahawks had an easy time running the ball with Lynch and Russell Wilson. Brian Cushing's health is vital to the Texans success this week. I think if the Texans can shut down Frank Gore, they can force Kaepernick to throw against a very good pass defense. I think that Joe Mays is also vital to the run stopping. He needs to keep playing well as he has all season.
Receivers vs Secondary
Andre Johnson showed why he is a Benjamin Button-like player last week. He just seems to be getting younger and younger every year and he is playing like it. The 49ers secondary has been good this year, but not the same after the departure of Dashon Goldson. They have good cover linebackers, but the Texans receivers are very good. DeAndre Hopkins had a tough time last week having his way, but he was drawing coverage from Richard Sherman some of the game. Speaking of Sherman, he was kind of dominated by Andre Johnson until his great play at the end of the game. I think the fact that the Texans tight ends are good too makes this a very tough matchup for the 49ers. Owen Daniels has been making some great catches and Garrett Graham has made some big plays as well for the Texans. The only thing that concerns me about the Texans receiving core is the person throwing them the ball. However, I think I have complained about that subject for too long . I think on the flip side, the 49ers are running out of targets. The only receivers that they really have are Anquan Boldin and Vernon Davis. I think that the countless members of the secondary on the Texans that are good are going to outweigh the good receivers of the 49ers. The addition of Ed Reed really paid off last week, as Russell Wilson just didn't want to throw the ball down the field. Jonathan Joseph and Kareem Jackson both had really good games last week as well. I think that the Texans will control the aerial game Sunday night and that will benefit the Texans.
J.J. Watt is very angry after the loss against the Seahawks. He used words that weren't as nice but he looked like he had just been in a fight after his facial scar. I think the Texans defensive line is very good and played that way last week. Whitney Mercillus has just been a beast so far this year and he and J.J. have lead the team in sacks so far with 3.5. I think the Texans don't have any problems on the defensive line and need to keep up the good work. J.J. Watt is angry and he is coming after the entire San Francisco team. On the other side of this matchup, the Texans offensive line is in disarray. Duane Brown's absence has killed the Texans and the opposing defensive lines have feasted. The fact that Aldon Smith is missing is huge for the Texans. If they had to prepare for Aldon it would be a bad day for the Texans. However, Justin Smith might have his way pressuring the Texans a lot. I think that the 49ers line is strong as well as the Texans.
Advantage: Nobody- It is too evenly matched to call it.
I believe in the Texans this week because they pose matchup problem for the 49ers. The gap of Matt Schaub just might be too large to fill that void. I think that he is such a weakness, he could possibly lose a game by himself. Get ready for some rough nosed football (Just ask J.J. Watt) and get ready for a low scoring game. I think both offenses will be okay, but the defenses will be strong. I am going to believe that Schaub does okay and doesn't throw another touchdown to the wrong end zone and team. I think in the end, the Texans will take this one. I am not guaranteeing it or possibly believing it but just trusting that Schaub won't fail. I want to warn Texans fans that this game will possibly be very ugly if Schaub doesn't play well.
Final Score: Texans 23, 49ers 19
Thanks for reading!