Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson will have a different voice going through his helmet for the 2020 season, with Tim Kelly being that voice.
Maybe, finally the offense of the Houston Texans will have a different pace of play, and even more so it will have to be more creative — hopefully — as head coach Bill O’Brien has stepped down as the play caller on offense and handed those duties over to offensive coordinator Tim Kelly.
This move made by O’Brien is smart and one of the best moves that is non-roster that he’s made this offseason. Kelly deserves a chance to freshen up the offense with O’Brien still being a part of the scheming and game plan of the offense week-to-week.
At the 2020 NFL Combine, Texans head coach and general manager O’Brien said the following about Kelly, as quoted by Mike Wells of ESPN.com:
"“[Kelly is] a really bright guy,” O’Brien said. “He’s a really good coach. Players really respect him. He just does a great job. Great knowledge of the whole offense from the passing game to the running game.”"
O’Brien still has final say on players as he’s also the general manager, but seeing that O’Brien is giving up some control is a good thing, because he needs to focus on the team as a whole. Plus, a new voice inside the helmet of quarterback Deshaun Watson is a welcome addition to the game day offense of Houston.
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It was easy to see the Texans were stale on offense, because the first quarter this past season for Houston was mostly awful, and even when they had a big lead — like they did in the playoffs against the Kansas City Chiefs — the offense never gained the final blow or kept their foot on the pedal, so to speak.
Over at HoustonTexans.com, Texans TV Host Drew Dougherty also quoted O’Brien about Kelly working with Watson:
"“Deshaun Watson and him have a great relationship,” O’Brien said. “Deshaun has great trust in Timmy, and the work that Timmy puts in. What Tim brings to the table in the meeting room and on the field.”"
For the 2019 season the Texans were 13th in the NFL in total offense 362 yards per game, in comparison the NFL leader was the Dallas Cowboys a 431.5 yards per game. The Texans were 12th in the league in yards per play at 5.7 ypp.
Houston had a third down conversion percentage of 44 percent for 8th-best in the league (84-for-193), and they had a fourth down conversion percentage of 52 percent (13-of-25). The fourth down percentage isn’t bad for 12th overall, but when it comes to the third down percentage, well, that leaves more for the imagination.
One part of the offense Kelly needs to fix though is points per game, as the Texans were in the middle of the league this past season at 23.6 ppg,, 14th in the NFL. The Baltimore Ravens led the NFL at 33.2 ppg, and division rival, the Tennessee Titans, were 10th in the NFL at 25.1 ppg.
The decision made by O’Brien is a smart decision and the correct choice. Now Kelly must add some new wrinkles, because if not, this move won’t be as good as it has the potential to be.