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Red Zone Play: 4-7, Brian! 4-7

If Tom Savage is the answer, we need a better question.

Houston Texans v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

I’m not sure if anyone is truly surprised by last night’s outcome. Houston’s best moments came before the team even took the field, as Chris Berman raved about Earl Campbell’s game of the ages on MNF in 1978. Nothing put forth by the Texans was nearly as exciting or inspirational.

At this point, it’s time to close the door on the Tom Savage era. Ryan Mallet, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Brian Hoyer and Case Keenum all have higher passer ratings than Savage at this point in the 2017 campaign. Keenum and Fitzpatrick have more touchdowns. Hoyer, Keenum, Fitzpatrick and Mallet all have higher completion percentages. In fact, the only meaningful QB stats where Savage is a leader in the group is interceptions and sacks.

In a nutshell, what we can infer from that is A) Savage holds on to the ball too long and B) he takes all that time to make a poor decision.

Sure the guy is very likeable. Sure he can throw cannonballs downfield better than Joe Flacco and with far more touch than Mallet ever could. But, at the end of the day he just doesn’t have what it takes to be a top 50 QB in this league. And that’s the level of backup Houston needs if Rick Smith is going to continue to put Raggedy Anne and Andy out there as starting offensive linemen.

At this point, taking a flier on RGIII, Colin Kaepernick or – heh – even Tim Tebow might bring more excitement and better execution to the Houston offense. The other upside to that? It keeps Savage in one piece so his value remains as intact as possible. That way, Smith can attempt to trade him for a 7th round bench warmer before Savage hits the free agent market.

Yes, it’s gotten bad enough that we’re dredging up names from the “Would people quit bringing up (insert washed up QB) already?!” file.

At this stage, the season is so hopeless we may as well get some sort of entertainment value out of the team. Any idea of a playoff run is wishful thinking of the highest order. Any hope of playing for a high round draft pick is dashed against the rocks of Deshaun Watson’s ACL. So, why not do something that would make P.T. Barnum smile?

We’re 4-7 and the light at the end of the tunnel is a freight train. But, the off-season’s coming. You know, that magical time when the Texans are always Super Bowl bound, the players are all Pro Bowl caliber and no one on the team is using their facemask to ricochet punts towards the sideline.

Looking at the upcoming schedule, we have the Titans, 49ers, Jaguars, Steelers and Colts. Optimistically, we could take the Titans and 49ers. But, odds are this is going to be the year where the Jags sweep Houston, Pittsburgh makes a deep playoff run (again) and the Colts – well, at least we can look forward to that New Year’s Eve present. So, the best we can rationally hope for at this stage is 7-9. On the outside looking in.

But, there’s always next year… where the Red Zone awaits.

Time to put on your Emperor of the Universe hat. What would you do to spark some excitement in the Houston offense again? Make Braxton Miller QB1? Bring in (inert free agent)? Trade Tom Savage for Jose Altuve’s favorite bat? Let us know in the comments below.