If the Houston Texans are going to get this season in gear, this would be a good time to do it. Facing a truly abhorrent Indianapolis Colts defense, you would certainly hope Brock Osweiler can finally look like the guy we all hoped he could be. This game feels like a “tipping point” to me, where a loss will be the start of a 2013-esque slide into oblivion, while a win... well, they still have to go to Denver the following week but...well, you know. One game at a time.
Let’s see how the BRB staff sees this one going:
Tim: Texans 28, Colts 24.
Andrew Luck is going to get beaten up as he has all season, but I still think he'll manage to throw for three TDs, two of which will go to T.Y. Hilton.
Offensively, I hope Bill O'Brien remembers the success the Texans had on their first two drives against the Titans and puts Brock Osweiler back into that up-tempo, quick strike offense. Mix in a few doses of the Millers to keep the deep ball a viable threat, and the Texans should be able to consistently move the ball against what may well be the worst defense in the entire league.
Chris HDH: Colts 27, Texans 24.
I went back and forth on this. I just think it’s a perfect storm of bad for Houston. The fans are gonna be all over Brock, and the secondary is likely to be some level of shorthanded. I hope to hell I’m wrong, but right now this feels like a tight one won in the final minutes by a field goal - and thus begins the slide.
BFmf’nD: Texans 31, Colts 24.
The Colts’ defense sucks. Period. We're due a game where Osweiler looks competent, thus teasing us enough to say he's the right answer at QB. If there's anything this Texans team, over the course of its history, has actually been good at, it's that they want us to believe there's a chance, and then not meet that expectation.
Mike Bullock: Texans 19, Colts 17.
The unstoppable force meets the immovable object.
Not that either the Colts or Texans are unstoppable or immovable by any stretching of the truth, but something has to give this week.
So far, Houston has beaten the teams they should beat and lost to the two they shouldn't have beaten
And they *should* beat the Colts - easily.
But, Bill O'Briens' squads have been historically horrific in night games.
Something has to give.
I'm still a believer in their want to win attitude - even though we haven't seen much of it lately. Call me dumb like that.
Matt Weston: Colts 31, Texans 27.
I can't believe I'm the last h8ter left. The last true believer.
The Texans are going to lose this game. 3/4 of Houston's secondary will be out. Andrew Luck is one of the best quarterbacks in the league, playing with a bad run game and bad defense, having to do everything on his own. The Colts’ defense is the worst I've seen this year. They are old and slow. They can't stop the run, can't cover anyone, and can't rush the passer. It's so bad that Brian Hoyer finished first in DYAR in Week Five. BRIAN HOYER. It's so bad that Erik Walden, the worst dancer in the NFL, is the Colts’ best pass rusher.
Yet I'm still taking the Colts. That's how bad the Texans’ offense has been. Luck against this infirmary ward secondary is a better matchup than Osweiler and the rest of the worst offense in football against the worst defense in football. It's going to be SO much fun when there is a three-way tie in the AFC South after the Titans beat the Browns.
Capt. Ron: Colts 19, Texans 13.
Chicago is the only common opponent to compare these two teams. The Colts beat the Bears 29-23 (by 6 points), and the Texans beat the Bears 23-14 (by 9 points). Based on that alone, the Texans should beat the Colts by 3 points. Right? (In a voice booming in from overhead: ”WRONG!”)
T.Y. Hilton and Andrew Luck could line up 2 v. 11 and still find a way to notch at least one touchdown against Houston, and that's WITH the full compliment of starters on Houston’s defense. Houston will be missing J.J. Watt and quite possibly several starters in the secondary. Indy can also expect some buffoonery on special teams to lead to points in their favor. As a case in point, last week the Texans put Jay Prosch in as a left gunner on punt coverage. That brilliant decision contributed to a 79-yard touchdown for Minnesota. (SIDE NOTE: Thanks to Weston for catching that little gem on film).
Then there is the ever-impotent offense of the Texans, which can easily be held to a couple of field goals until late in the 4th quarter, when they'll claw their way to a garbage-time touchdown to keep giving fans false hope. Sure, I realize the Colts' defense is bad, but that won't matter, because Brock Osweiler and his offensive line couldn't navigate their way through a phone booth right now thanks in most part to terrible game plans and abysmal play calling by the coaches.
Finally, this is a nationally broadcast night game, and Houston has a terrible record in these contests. Yes, I'm very salty right now and for good reason. The Houston Texans have given very little reason for optimism after five games, and I don't care what the record says. Their strategy and execution has been terrible. A disaster!
All that being said, I sure hope the Texans shake off whatever funk has been gripping them up to this point and find a way to win this game. My fandom says: "GO TEXANS!" My emotionally-scarred psyche, from being a fan of this team since inception, suggests that this will be a nail-biter with the Texans barely in the lead (13-12) until there are less than three minutes remaining in the game and the Colts win on some heartbreaking play that may or may not involve terrible officiating.
Luke Beggs: Colts 35, Texans 31.
It's an AFC South team, but not the usual AFC South team. It's got a good quarterback. A hairy feral one, but a quarterback nonetheless.
The Texans are missing quite a hefty chunk of their secondary and their offense would really need to click in order for them to win this one. I think their offense will click, but it won't be enough.
UprootedTexan: Colts 19, Texans 17.
I really want to think the Texans win against the Colts. They're at home, the Colts’ defense is wretched with a lot of their "key" "pieces" "missing," their offensive line makes ours look like a legion of bulldozers, and they're being coached by a guy who thought this would be a good idea for a kickoff.
That said, this is still a prime time game, the Texans are struggling on both sides of the ball, it's a prime time game, Brock Osweiler can't complete a pass to his best receivers, it's a prime time game, and our secondary is pretty banged up. Oh, and it's a prime time game.
The Texans lose, because prime time game, but for once they don't get pantsed. If they do, I could totally see this season start to swirl down the drain a la 2013.
Yeesh. Obviously, as a whole, a lot of us aren’t feeling this team right now. Feel free to put your predictions in the comments below. Are you feeling more optimistic about this game than most of us are?