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Laremy Tunsil Paying Big Dividends for Deshaun Watson

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The Houston Texans may have given away the farm to get him, but it might be worth it.

NFL: Houston Texans at Los Angeles Chargers
Sit Down, Bosa, it’s Tunsil-Time!
Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time in, well, longer than I can recall, your Houston Texans have gone two straight games without giving up a sack. For a team that was on track at one point to surrender 90 this season, that’s pretty amazing.

While new left tackle Laremy Tunsil doesn’t deserve all the credit for the new sack drought, he certainly should get the lion’s share. That fact hasn’t gone unnoticed by the national media.

According to our own Kenneth L., Tunsil has only given up two sacks this year. His contribution goes far beyond keeping the defensive hounds from nipping at Deshaun Watson’s heels, though.

Because Houston’s running attack has had a resurgence this season as well, with Carlos Hyde clocking in as a Top 10 running back. Not to mention that Duke Johnson and Deshaun Watson are both in the NFL’s top 50 rushers as well. Those two running backs and the franchise quarterback have combined for 829 yards and eight rushing touchdowns through six games.

All this makes the Texans’ ground and pound crew the fifth-best in the league so far, averaging 139.8 yards per game.

Tunsil and his offensive linemates have also helped Houston post a Top 10 passing game, keeping Watson upright long enough for the QB to complete 140 of his 202 passes for a percentage of 69.3% and 1,542 yards (which puts Watson on track for another 4,000+ yard season). Houston has also scored twelve touchdowns through the air in six games (which projects to 32 when the regular season ends).

Tunsil and friends have given up eighteen sacks this year, averaging three per game. Based on that number, the total projects to 48 this year, a far better number than 90 or last year’s league-worst 62.

With the injury to rookie lineman Tytus Howard, the (re)signing of veteran Chris Clark and some other roster shufflings, the stability Tunsil brings not only helps between the whistles, but across the board. Six games in, what do you think of the trade that sent two first round picks and a second-rounder to the Dolphins in exchange for Tunsil and Kenny Stills? If you had the opportunity to go back in time and make that trade, would you still pull that trigger? Or would you have looked elsewhere? Give us your revisionist history below.