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Incompletions (Texans v. Jaguars): Cecil Comes Home

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With so much to write and talk about after every game, and not enough time for one man to write about it all, the masthead joins together and reacts to the Houston Texans' win over the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Logan Bowles-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Weston:

Nothing would override Cecil Shorts XIV's homecoming. Nothing. Water turning into blood. Seats teeming with frogs. Lice covering scalps itching with little nibbles. Swarms of flies in every orifice. A diseased Jaxon De Ville. Boils blotched and bloody. A thunderstorm of hail and fire. Locusts turning green to black. Total darkness felt. First born wails. None of it could stop Cecil Shorts the 14th from getting his revenge.

Then DeAndre Hopkins showed up.

He caught 10 passes on 15 targets for 148 yards and 2 touchdowns. He was unbelievable on Sunday. He caught nearly everything. Hoyer overthrew, underthrew, threw wide right, wide left, and did everything he could to knock the ball against the grass, but only five attempts didn't add to DeAndre's yardage total.

Hopkins doesn't have arms and hands like the rest of us who live with skin glued around the typical human skeleton. DeAndre has two sticky hands for upper body limbs. He casts his arms towards the ball and waits until it sticks to him:

-One handed back shoulder fades

Hopkins catch

-Sticking the ball against the helmet

Hopkins catch

-Diving slides that snare Hoyer's underthrows.

-Slant receptions that prove "DeAndre Hopkins open" is a different type of open.

The most important of his catches was not necessarily the best. The monumental one came with 8:07 left in the 4th quarter, a 26 yard touchdown that made the game 24-14.

Hopkins is matched up against Devon House like he was all game. House is playing man-press coverage with one safety covering the middle of the field.

Hopkins catches

DeAndre is running a simple fade route down the sideline. He takes an outside release around the press. It takes him two steps to get House to turn his hips. Hopkins already has the upper hand. Hoyer looks at the safety and sees that he's going to sit in the middle of the field.

Hopkins catches

Afterwards, Hoyer knows where he's going to go with the ball. He turns to the left and sees Hopkins even with House.

Hopkins catches

DeAndre then does something I haven't seen before. He turns a simple fade into a masterpiece. With Hoyer getting ready to throw, Nuk steps back into House and comes into his body to slow him down without pushing off. He then plants off his right foot and stampedes down the sideline.

Hopkins catches

The ball is in the air. The safety hasn't budged. Hopkins has a yard of separation. Brian Hoyer couldn't Brian Hoyer this throw unless he tosses it out of bounds.

Hopkins catches

The safety realizes wow, that ball is going towards the sideline. Maybe I should have done something about that.

Hopkins catches

Hopkins catches

All hail DeAndre. He can't be stopped.

I Told You Ryan Mallett Would Play!

Big Fat Drunk:

Brian Hoyer is surely HOF bound after this game, amirite?

This game was about two players: DeAndre Hopkins and Blake Bortles.

Hopkins made catch after catch of poorly thrown balls showing an amazing receiving radius.  It definitely helps that Hoyer is smart enough to throw the ball so often to his best weapon, but Hopkins is the entire key to the passing game.

Blake Bortles is the anti-Hopkins. Granted, Bortles' shoulder is hurt, and there was the expectation he could be even more inaccurate than normal, but that was the worst QB play we've seen since Hoyer in Week 1. The Texans won 31-20.  Bortles bortled a pick-six, an INT in the red zone, and an INT when they were still in the game in the fourth quarter. To me, that's more than 11 points of difference.  Bortles' play costed the Glitter Kitties the game.

I don't see this as a rebound game.  The Jags lost this game more than we won it, and if we have to be handed a game by the Glitter Kitties to beat them? That's not a long-term plan for success.

Oh, and Bortles STILL dropped three TDs yesterday, FFS.

Brett Kollmann:

I actually disagree with you there, BFD. Sure, you could say that Bortles threw eleven points away in interceptions and therefore handed the Texans a free win, but I like to think of that as the defense finally stepping up and TAKING the win for themselves for once. The offense was refreshingly able to move the chains and give Watt's boys a breather, and in turn that unit rewarded their offense with a few extra possessions. 

On top of that, DeAndre Hopkins continued to play like one of the best receivers in the NFL; he can cover up for Brian Hoyer's spotty ball placement. Arian Foster showed he is STILL the engine that makes this team go.

This was a good, well-rounded team win against a division rival. Mistakes from the Jags or no mistakes, I'd say it was a solid outing.

kdentify:

We took a step forward this week. It wasn't a huge step, but it was an important one, both for the team, and the fan base, to show that this year's Houston Texans are capable of beating teams they are supposed to beat.

I'm still concerned about the defense, though. Lonnie Ballentine is gone for the season, which means our secondary is still going to be an issue going forward. But with essentially half a J.J. Watt, and no Jadevoen Clowney, this defense was able to effectively control the game. I'd like to believe that we're going to build upon this game, and the re-introduction of Clowney should make this a formidable defense against the Dolphins, but we still employ Eddie unPleasant so I expect some WTF? moments next week.

Hoyer to Hopkins with Foster in on the action will be the key to offensive success for this team. We still need to get the OL situation settled, but Xavier Su'a-Filo, so far, is not panning out to be a productive pick. I like that we got Cecil Shorts III involved in his return to his old stomping grounds, and I'd like to see more action to the TEs to further round out the offense. But this was a good game plan, even though there were some "Why TF are You Calling That Play?" moments (like that steaming hot sh.t where Arian lost yardage because a sneak was too simple or something).

Any win against a division rival is something to be celebrated. Even when that division is the AFC South. So, with that typed: Woot! Go Texans!!!


Look Ma, One Hand!

Capt Ron:

The Texans got a division win, and a much needed bounce to save their season.  They have to carry this forward to Miami, and I think they will.

Game balls should go to DeAndre Hopkins and Andre Hal.

Go Texans!

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