What Houston Texans need to carry over for next win


The Houston Texans are, for just the second time this season, coming off of a win into their next game. They won their week six game against the Jacksonville Jaguars 31-20, avoiding a three game losing streak heading into their matchup against the Miami Dolphins.

There’s obviously been a lot that has gone wrong, a 2-4 record definitely doesn’t show that things are going correctly, but not a lot have talked about what exactly has gone right for the Texans. Within the two wins they’ve been able to grab, there’s some clear cut components that they should aim to achieve again in the following weeks to keep racking up wins.

Wins are important, because although they’ve got a losing record, they’re just one loss behind the Indianapolis Colts (3-3) to tie for the division lead. Division lead puts you in the conversation for playoffs, something the Texans have only done twice since 2002, and not at all since 2012.

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What went right in their wins against the Jags and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers? Looking at the box score, it’s a whole lot of defense. That’s not surprising though, since coming into this season their defense was expected to be a big part of their success with J.J. Watt and the acquisition of Vince Wilfork who came from the Super Bowl winning New England Patriots.

Week 3 defense

The Texans defense this week held Jameis Winston and the Bucs to just 14 first downs, which really makes it tough to score. Score they did not, as they ended the game with just nine points.

Overall, the Buccaneers really just didn’t seem prepared for this defense. They finished the game with 318 yards. Their passing was okay, as 261 of those yards were pass yards. The biggest stop for the Texans was definitely in the run game, where they limited the Bucs to just 57 total yards. They also forced a turnover, which is always helpful.

It shouldn’t be ignored that the offense helped win this game too, scoring 19 points on 413 yards, but I still see this game being won by the defense.

Week 6 defense

Week six was another big win for the team (as big as they’ve come this season, in all reality). Many doubted the team and even thought that the Texans would fall to the Jaguars.

Against Jacksonville, the defense didn’t do as great, giving up a fairly normal 26 first downs, and 394 total yards. 311 of those yards were passing yards.

That leaves one giant thing that was similar between the first two wins: a limited amount of rushing yards. They limited their opponents to less than 100 rushing yards in both wins, something they only did in one of their losses this season (Week 1 against the Kansas City Chiefs, 97 rushing yards).

The other similarity was the turnovers. The Texans have only forced turnovers in three games this season, and in both of their wins. In the week six win, they forced three, which puts your offense at a huge advantage.

It’s really true, a good offense starts with a great defense, and that’s something the Texans need to win the rest of the season.

Next week and the rest of the season

To me, it’s obvious, the defense needs to help the offense and pave the way to victory. They’ve been a huge part of the two wins already this year, and history typically does repeat itself. They average two forced turnovers so far in wins this season, and hold opposing offenses to just 70 yards per game in wins.

It should be a surprise to just about no one, the defense was expected to be huge this season, just as it has been in past years. The offense is still struggling to be much of anything special, but the defense has the tools–and must use them–in order for the Texans to win.

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