Welcome back, boys and girls. If the cover for Week One of 2015 doesn't get you ready for football, at least you can submit an opinion in the psychological evaluation I assume is coming after I made this. The Texans enter the 2015 regular season against the Chiefs --another team that spun their wheels in 2014.
Kansas City invaded with a sea of arrowheads, thus the "300" reference. Moving on, here is this week's infographic. A new design is in effect this year.
Now for the X-Factors:
Shane Lechler. His ability to flip the field when the offense struggles, and they will struggle against that Chief's defense, will likely determine the outcome of this game: Chiefs 9, Texans 10.
Brian Hoyer. He has to move the ball against a very good defense while refraining from the back-breaking interceptions that plagued him in Cleveland over the second half of last season (11 INTs from Weeks 9-17 of 2014, and he didn't even play in two of those games). The eyes of a skeptical fan base will be squarely upon him.
Jadeveon Clowney. We will finally get to see him semi-healthy and playing with J.J. Watt again. The sky is the limit for those two working together.
As we enter Year 3 of QB HELL (yes, in caps), Brian Hoyer is the primary actor in this Dante-ian romp. The "battle" between Hoyer and Ryan Mallet, so to speak, created great divisions among Texans fans during the off-season. Now that it's settled, Hoyer as the
skinniest kid at fat camp victor has something to prove.
Hoyer. We're missing Arian, so that places even more pressure on the passing game. If Hoyer struggles, this could be a long afternoon despite the strength of our defense and special teams. Texans 14. Chiefs 10.
I don't have faith in Alfred Blue adequately replacing Arian Foster until he gets healthy. So I'm going Chris Polk. If he can perform, and the run game gets going for Hoyer to take advantage of easier throws then maybe Houston can hold on until Foster returns.
Brian Cushing. I'm not entirely sure how the game plan changes without Mike Mohamed to help out on coverage with Travis Kelce. Will Cushing stay on the field more on third downs and see increased time in coverage? Will Akeem Dent get abused? I'm also very curious to see what kind of "games & deals" (as Spencer Tillman would say) Romeo Crennel has in his bag of tricks to get Cushing involved in the pass rush.
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Chiefs vs Texans coverage