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Totally Not Fake News: Evolution (Of Some Sort)

You are either improving...or you are not.

New England Patriots v Houston Texans Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

HOUSTON, TX - It is a near constant of life that life on Earth either evolves or perishes. Failure is seen as perhaps the greatest of teachers. The fear of failure can be even more a driver for individuals and organizations to succeed more than the desire for glory and the positive feelings that success can engender. So it is with the NFL and the Houston Texans. Although the team came up on the wrong end of the score after the final whistle for the 4th straight week, many around the organization see a lot of good from the recent game.

For one, the performance from starting quarterback Davis Mills was worth a discussion:

“I was throwing good, wasn’t I? I mean, that game at Buffalo was very, very, very bad. I felt like the world’s worst quarterback who had the worst performance of any thrower. But, after I got home, and Mommy got me some hot chocolate and my warm security blanket, I was able to sleep good. Did some of those positive affirmation things before practice, and I don’t know, I guess I just sorta realized that I can throw the football, that I don’t have to be scared of those big, mean bullies who always try to hurt me when I play. So, I get out to the game, and it was so...so...swell!!!”

New England Patriots v Houston Texans
What a difference a week (and some TLC) make...
Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

“Yeah, it was nice he didn’t SUCK this game” noted Brandin Cooks, who casually checked off another box on a chart in his locker. We couldn’t quite see all of the details, but we did get a glance at the title of the chart

“Days Until I Can Get the [Easterby] Out of Here!!!!”

Other players took another positive vibe from this game. “Moving up the ladder to being the best defensive back on this roster, [Easterby] Yeah!!!” exclaimed Lonnie Johnson, Jr. “2 games, 2 picks…actually, should have been 3 picks in 2 games, but that jealous [Easterby] [Justin] Reid got in the way of a well-deserved pick…ah well, guess we are all tied at this point. Certainly, leaving that ‘Mr. 2021 Defensive Player of the Year and NFL MVP Vernon Hargreaves the Third, or whatever, in the dust, that is for [Easterby] sure!!!”

NFL: OCT 10 Patriots at Texans
The best DB, if not, defender on the team right now?
Photo by Ken Murray/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

When asked for a response, the NFL player formerly known as “Mr. 2021 DPOY and NFL MVP, etc, etc, etc” offered a terse “no comment” while he took a break from a phone call with the Department of Records. This seemed a heated call where said player screamed at someone on the other line that he deserved a refund and wanted to change is name back. The individual seemed to indicate that he was free to change his name back, but that would cost just as much.

As for other parts of the game, well, that didn’t quite go so well. “I fired Tracy Smith for this [Easterby]?” swore Jack Easterby to Nick Caserio during an inadvertently hot-miked Zoom meeting. “What in the every-loving [Easterby] was our minion Culley thinking with that call? Can you tell me anything positive out of that?”

“Well, it does seem to have attracted its share of likes on social media. At least they are talking about the team. All publicity is good publicity” replied Caserio.

“You do have a point” noted Easterby. “Kinda like all of my divinely inspired motivational quotes that I put out.”

As for other leaders, they tried to take the positives out of a tough loss as well. This includes Head Coach David Culley:

“Hey, I think that the biggest thing we should be looking at is how we improved. That game at Buffalo, ok, that was not good. The team knows what I thought of the game. So, we came out and executed a wonderful half of football. Good execution and ball control, along with timely defensive actions. Ok, it wasn’t perfect, and the kicking game could probably use some work. Still, we had a great half, and I am confident that soon, we might just be able to put together two complete halves in the same game.”

However, while the first half did seem to bear out Culley’s optimistic view, questions about the second half of the game, particularly a series of calls made by the coach, did not illicit the same sort of vibe:

“Hey, I’ve only been around football my entire adult life. It ain’t easy being the head coach, and sometimes, you have to make tough calls. You try to use your gut as well as any specific analytic tools you can. During the game, in particular, my system seemed to have some problems. Kept getting a few of those “Answer hazy” or “Please ask again” responses during the game. That last answer came up right as we were going to kick that field goal in the 4th quarter. Had to take a time out to try to clear up the system, finish its recalculations and shot out the answer “Yes” on the FG. I mean, it worked so well in the 1st half, but I don’t know, maybe it was something the other sideline did…they have a habit of that.”

While we couldn’t see the exact, specific device that Culley used to help “gonk-u-late” his data and statistical analysis for his 4th down decisions, as well as other key moments in the game, we did obtain from anonymous sources just what his “device” might look like.

Magic 8 Ball
Behold, the “alleged” David Culley super-duper, special, top-secret decision-aiding gonk-u-lating device
Photo by: GHI/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

With last week the past, this team is primed to take the path of learning as they fly north to Indianapolis, a friendly destination for almost every Texans team. Well, at least for the players. Unfortunately, the Texans fans find themselves in another series of heating social media battles with another fan base. Again, like Jacksonville, it gets quite heated:

Texans Fans: “[Easterby] It!!! Why do we suck so hard? Up 22-9 on the weakest New England team since the Victor Kiam days, and we can’t get the job done? What the ever-loving [Easterby] are we thinking? We ain’t ever gonna win a real game with this regime???”

Indy Fans: “Oh shut the [Easterby] up, you dumb[Easterby] cow-patty sniffers? You whining about your team and its decisions? Take a look at our team? We sold the future to get a broken-down bust of a draft pick who only got a Super Bowl ‘cause he was on the same team as ‘Playoff’ Nick Foles. We were supposed to be competing for the AFC South at a minimum, and now we are tied with you dumb[Easterbys]? Man, we are absolutely the worst team in the division!”

Texans Fans: “Uh, you might want to remove the hayseeds from your Hoosier ears, you [Easterby]clowns!!!! You whining about trading draft capital for a bad deal? You forget about who we once had for a GM and the future he mortgaged to Miami? And now that LT, who can’t run block against a scarecrow, is looking at a busted thumb and might be ineffective for the rest of the season? And don’t get us started on wasting money on players? We have a top 5 paid kicker, who can only make 1 out of 3 extra points and can’t kick a 56 yard FG, costing us 5 points in a game we lost by 3!”

New England Patriots v Houston Texans
The best kicker for New England on Sunday?
Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

Indy Fans: “You seriously talking about bad kickers? Did you see our sorry [Easterby] excuse for a kicker with those glasses that look like replacement lenses for the Hubble Telescope? Man, those most have been the original lens before they fixed them, ‘cause that dumb [Easterby] also missed a bunch of kicks and embarrassed us on national TV, as we blew our own 22-9-type lead. All this to a QB, who can only complete quasi-accurate passes when he is in a zone? Dear Lord, we absolutely suck!!!”

Indianapolis Colts v Baltimore Ravens
The man of the match...for the New Baltimore team
Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Texans Fans: “No, we suck MORE!!!”

Indy Fans: “No, we SUCK MORE!!!”

Jacksonville Fans: “Hey, we ain’t won a game, and we suck MORE!!!”

Texans/Indy Fans: “Ok, you guys may suck more than us, but not by much!”

Rest of the NFL: “You ALL EQUALLY [EASTERBY] SUCK!!!”

At this point, the tenor of the social media discourse was getting so bad that Coach Culley had to upload the offensive game film from the HOU-BUF game, and the entire collection of “Building the Texans” on to the web forums to bring about an end to the conversation. No word as to when the sites will be back on-line.

Hopefully, future games between the Texans and various opponents will not degenerate into such discourse, but it is getting hard to moderate the tone of conversation in this day and age. Until we can, we at Totally Not Fake News will continue to watch and report on the state of the Texans, and hopefully, calmer days.