Good morning and happy Wednesday Texans fans. We are just a few days away from another game day where we can hope for the Houston Texans to end their current losing streak. To help get us through the rest of the week, the morning huddle offers up some links about the worth of one J.J. Watt, as well as a look at the newest depth chart.
Cecil Shorts ahead of schedule in recovery from dislocated left shoulder – by Aaron Wilson, Houston Chronicle
"Texans starting wide receiver Cecil Shorts is regarded as ahead of schedule after dislocating his left shoulder on the final play of a loss to the Atlanta Falcons.Out of a sling and not requiring surgery, Shorts is considered to have a better chance to return Sunday against the Jacksonville Jaguars, his old team, than fellow injured wide receiver Nate Washington. Washington has a hamstring injury. Neither practiced Monday.“I feel good, I’m coming along,” Shorts said. “I’m way ahead of schedule. We’ll see how things go. We’ve got to be smart about it.”Shorts signed a two-year, $6 million contract with the Texans this offseason that included a $1 million signing bonus with $2.5 million guaranteed."
Ultimate Standings: J.J. Watt powers Texans to rankings jump – by Tania Ganguli, ESPN
"Overall: 50Title track: T68Ownership: 42Coaching: T47Players: 41Fan relations: 34Affordability: 72Stadium experience: 47Bang for the buck: 73Change from last year: +22Though a quarterback is typically the face of an organization, that hasn’t been true for Houston lately. Defensive end J.J. Watt basically is the Texans-he’s a big reason the team is ranked No. 41 in the players category, and he’s a big reason only five NFL rosters ranked higher in likability. In fact, the 26-year-old Watt is so popular locally that the Houston Chronicle did a 22-page special section devoted solely to the Wisconsin native.What’s goodEven after a dismal 2-14 season in 2013, the Texans had a wait list of 20,000 people for season tickets last year. The vibe in NRG Stadium (ranked 47th in stadium experience) and an NFL-high score in how professionally players act on (and off) the field — thanks in large part to Watt — play a big role in bringing fans back year after year, despite above-average ticket costs. Regardless, fans are interested in the Texans, and Houston’s front office knows how to treat them well. The fan relations ranking is an admirable 34, the Texans’ best showing in any category this year."
Why the Lions and Texans QB carousels are very different – by Mike Garafolo, FOX Sports
"Two of the recent coach hirings in the NFL were done with quarterback development in mind. They were the Houston Texans’ grabbing Bill O’Brien from Penn State and the Detroit Lions’ bringing in Jim Caldwell to work with Matthew Stafford.In Houston, O’Brien doesn’t seem to have a firm feel for whether he thinks Brian Hoyer or Ryan Mallett is the best option for his team over the long term. O’Brien doesn’t look like he’s had a plan for how to manage those two.If not for Mallett’s injury that briefly knocked him out of the game on Thursday, he might still be the starter in Houston. But Hoyer came in, played well in relief and, despite a bad throw for an interception late in the game, convinced O’Brien he should be the starter â€” which is what O’Brien decided before the season and should’ve decided again even after the Week 1 loss.In Detroit, where on Sunday Stafford was on the sideline in the third quarter — the third quarter — in favor of Dan Orlovsky — Dan Orlovsky. That smacks of a desperate attempt by Caldwell, who has been unable to do for Stafford what he did for Joe Flacco as the Baltimore Ravens offensive coordinator in 2012, to distance himself from Stafford’s play."
Texans release unofficial depth chart for Jacksonville matchup– HoustonTexans.com
"The Houston Texans (1-4) will try to break a two-game losing streak and win their first divisional game of the year when they travel to Jacksonville on Sunday to take on the Jaguars (1-4). Kickoff at EverBank Field is set for 1 p.m. ET.Both teams hold a 1-4 record this season and an 0-1 mark in divisional play. Houston is also looking for its first win on the road in 2015, having previously lost the first two at Carolina and Atlanta. The Texans lead in the all-time series with the Jaguars, 15-11, and have won seven out of the last nine matchups, including the last two in 2014.In Week 5, Houston fell to Indianapolis, 27-20, on Thursday Night Football at NRG Stadium. Despite the loss, WR DeAndre Hopkins caught a career-high 11 passes for 169 yards and currently leads the NFL in receiving yards (578), while ranking second in receptions (42). Both of those totals are the highest marks through the first five games of a season in team history. WR Jaelen Strong became the first player in franchise history to score two receiving touchdowns in his first career game against the Colts. He was also the first NFL player to find the end zone on the first two receptions of his career since Jaguars WR Allen Hurns did so in Week 1 of the 2014 campaign.QB Brian Hoyer entered the game in the second quarter last week and notched the fifth 300-yard passing game of his career, while finishing with his third-highest passer rating (116.6) in a game. The Texans are averaging 300.0 net passing yards and 396.2 total net yards per game this season, which rank fourth and fifth in the league, respectively. Defensively, Houston is allowing teams to convert only 30.8 percent of their third down opportunities, which ranks second in the NFL.The Jaguars are coming off a 38-31 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium. QB Blake Bortles posted career highs in touchdown passes (four) and passer rating (125.4), while registering his second career 300-yard passing game. WR Allen Robinson tied a career-high with two receiving touchdowns in the contest."