The Houston Texans were looking pretty foolish for giving big contracts to Brock Osweiler and Lamar Miller until both came up huge on Sunday Night Football
The Houston Texans were supposed to have a revamped offense this season after giving big contracts to free agents Brock Osweiler and Lamar Miller. Entering their game against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday Night Football they really hadn’t gotten much return on that investment.
Miller had been a work horse, but his yards per carry were nothing to write home about and he had no touchdowns on the season. Osweiler entered the game with more interceptions (7) than touchdowns (6).
With the bright lights on them, Miller rose to the occasion and was the one positive for Houston through three quarters. He finally rushed for a touchdown and was over 100 yards on the ground.
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Despite Miller’s play, they were trailing 23-9 in the fourth and all Osweiler had done was add to his interception total and raised even more concern about his play.
Then something happened in the final quarter. Osweiler decided to quit forcing the ball to a covered DeAndre Hopkins and he began to spread it around. He started hitting receivers and then on a play that was essentially a dump off, Miller made player after player miss and took it in for his first receiving touchdown on the season.
Defensively the Texans responded to the offenses play and got them the ball right back. Osweiler then orchestrated a quick drive down the field and delivered a rocket touchdown pass to tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz to tie it up and send it to overtime.
Again in the extra period the defense was amazing and made Colts quarterback Andrew Luck look like the first year starter, forcing a quick punt. The big-money Texans QB then took the field with all the confidence in the world.
A 36-yard dime to receiver Jaelen Strong was the play of the drive and it set them up for a game winner off the foot of kicker Nick Novak.
The Texans improved to 4-2 and sent their biggest rival to the bottom of the AFC South at 2-4. More importantly, we all saw what Osweiler is capable of and why general manager Rick Smith was willing to pay him roughly $17 million per season.
Osweiler is now 3-0 in his short career in overtime. He may struggle from time to time, but his confidence was never shaken. In the clutch he looked every bit the part of a franchise quarterback.
He wound up with 269 passing yards and two touchdowns. He did still have one interception, which would be nice to see him work on eliminating from at least one game (he still has at least one in all six games this season).
As for Miller, the former Miami Dolphin had more than six yards per rush. He finished with 149 yards on the ground and 29 through the air. His two touchdowns also showed how dynamic he really can be.
The win not only created some space in the AFC South, but also gives the team some confidence moving forward. The last thing they needed was to be down on themselves as they enter another prime time game in Week 7.
This next one will be huge. The Texans are facing the team that refused to match the offer to Osweiler, the Denver Broncos. The pressure on him would have been unreal if Houston had failed Sunday night.
Now he heads to his old home stadium to face his old team. Hopefully he will remember to spread it around and that he can also rely on Miller to make a play when nothing is open downfield.
One thing is for sure, Houston will need both Miller and Osweiler to beat Denver on Monday night. Thankfully after Sunday, there is some new hope that they will show up and perform well.