If it wasn't already obvious, I'm styling this post as a mirror to Tim's post last week, trying to make sense of the horror we saw against the Arizona Cardinals. Now it's time to make sense of the awe-inspiring performance we saw this weekend. How much of this stock are you buying?
Whereas last Saturday, we were scrounging to find some positives, this week is chock-full of highlights... suspiciously chock-full. By my count, Houston scored on the ground, through the air, through the uprights, after a blocked punt, and via an interception return. They also looked respectable returning kicks and nigh impenetrable on kick coverage. I feel like there's an anvil dangling over my head right now.
So where to start? Ryan Fitzpatrick looked like an NFL caliber player, for one. He drove the offense down the field for a touchdown, not once, but twice, including a well-executed two minute drill. He's no Russell Wilson, but he showed some capability in extending plays and making throws on the run (like in the gif below).
H/T to Fansided.
Rookies Alfred Blue and Jay Prosch looked like the future of Texans' backfield. Chris Berman would be proud of Blue rumblin' and stumblin' toward the end zone on that first touchdown drive. Blue is an LSU Tiger and Prosch is an Auburn Tiger... that's a nickname waiting to happen, so get on it, BRB.
C.J. Fiedorowicz impressed us, making two catches with linebackers draped over his shoulders on each one. His run-blocking has been as advertised, but if he can develop into a solid pass-catcher... look out! I was hoping to see more out of Ryan Griffin, but nothing yet.
The secondary was much improved, to say the least. Having to face Roddy White and Julio Jones is no easy task, but the coverage schemes were executed much more effectively. Yes, there were penalties, but in case you haven't heard, EVERYONE is struggling with those pesky illegal contact/touching/sneezing penalties. I hope that they loosen the restrictions because it's getting absurd.
Does Bill O'Brien have the audacity to think he can fix Keshawn Martin? Apparently he does. Martin caught a 30+ yard pass from Case Keenum thanks to a beautiful double move. Later on, Martin was featured on two consecutive bubble screens for easy gains. He's got the natural quickness and agility, so these types of routes play directly into his strengths. Kudos for now.
And oh yeah, JADEVEON KITTENING CLOWNEY.
NFL teams will learn not to run trap plays against him. It's hard to see, but the LG was supposed to pull around and smash Jadeveon Clowney from the side while the LT moved up field. Clowney's first step is frighteningly fast and he's in the backfield before the LG can lay a hand on him. This was eerily similar to his famous hit back in college, except that it was the RG that was supposed to pull and block him.
Whew, okay, so just as we shouldn't have gotten all melodramatic over the Week 1 slaughter, it'd be best to temper our expectations despite all the positive takeaways from this game. Durga knows we've gotten our hopes up before. Still, we're curious to know what you think of the team now that it's shown the capability of winning a game. Sound off.I'll be re-watching the game tonight and will have some film for you guys to digest tomorrow... probably. Until then!
And don't forget to get your Free Sonic Slush tomorrow. We've earned it, dammit.
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