The third episode of the hit series Hard Knocks opened with a fiery speech by superhuman defensive end J.J. Watt. Personally, I thought the speech was superb, and that should be every NFL team’s mentality. Good guys off of the field who always do the right thing, but when it’s time to strap it up, they must become “the baddest motherf****rs on the planet.”
Here is the speech in its entirety:
"“Hey, the philosophy of this fu***n’ squad is, off the field, we’re good-ass dudes. We’re nice fu***ng guys, we do the right thing. On the field? When you step on the field, you’re the baddest fu***r on the planet. And together, we’re the baddest fu***n’ team on the planet! And that’s the way we’re gonna attack every fu***n’ day. I don’t care who walks into our building, I don’t care whose building we walk into — we’re the baddest fu****s out there! Texans on three: 1, 2, 3, TEXANS!”"
Now, my wife didn’t appreciate her romanticized version of Watt being tarnished with the expletive-ridden rant, but it goes to show that this Texans unit has a defined “us against the world” mentality. That can only further boost the chemistry and overall prowess of this stacked defense.
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Watt’s potty-mouth is second to nobody, except perhaps Head Coach Bill O’Brien. Even then, as we saw in the third installment of Hard Knocks unfold; we got a glimpse of the other side of Bill O’Brien’s mental coin.
His son Jack, who just celebrated his 13th birthday (Happy belated birthday, Jack!), suffers from lissencephaly. The literal translation of his condition means “smooth brain,” as it causes the folds in grooves in the brain to never fully develop. Due to his condition, even the most menial and basic tasks are made too difficult for him to handle. Bill and his wife show supreme dedication and set a great example of how to be great parents, even in the face of immense challenges. The way that Bill O’Brien interacted with his son Jack was in stark contrast to his coaching attitude. He was calm, loving and seemed to be the only one who could make his son laugh. There’s a lot to be said of someone who can switch gears and show unconditional love like Billy-O does for Jack.
Another big part of this episode was showing how dedicated and versatile Charles James II really is. Not only does he consistently make plays on defense and special teams, Bill O’Brien made the decision to try him at running back for a few plays and for all intents and purposes, he did a fantastic job.
My two favorite parts of the show were when Khari Lee, an undrafted rookie tight end, stood up in front of the entire team during their “entertainment skits” and performed a beautiful rendition of the famed Bill O’Brien. The next was during the pre-game warmups before facing off against the Denver Broncos. Charles James waltzed up to Peyton Manning, flattered him with the usual teenage fan girl mantra of “OMG you’re the greatest.” Seriously though, he didn’t come off that strong, but it was pretty humorous to witness.
At the end of the day, this Texans squad seems to be extremely cohesive, and the bonds they’re forming with teammates are easily visible while watching Hard Knocks.
The true blue-collar character of this team continues to shine through, and it may just propel them to a surprising season.