The Texans defense held strong throughout most of the contest on Sunday. Through three-quarters of play, they held the Browns to under 100 yards rushing. The final factor was in the 2nd half, the Texans injuries to their defense, and their lack of depth on the defensive side of the ball made things difficult for the Houston defense.
Ballhawk Justin Reid got an interception for his second consecutive game with a 2nd quarter pick, off of quarterback Baker Mayfield. If Reid’s ability to make game-changing plays could have filtered through other members on defense, the outcome of the game could have swung the Texans way.
The run defense for Houston has been much improved than that of their embarrassing 2020 run defense. It is already a tall task to go against the 1-2 punch that the Browns have in their backfield.
If the Browns didn’t look to run it so much late in the game the Texans depth wouldn’t have been so exploited. Their performance down the stretch was average at best and ultimately made it difficult for the Texans to get back into the game late in the contest.
SPECIAL TEAMS (D)
Sunday’s game against the Cleveland Browns was a game to forget for the Houston Texans with their special teams game.
It all started with a muffed punt from Andre Roberts that was recovered by the browns in the 1st quarter. That was a huge missed opportunity for the Texans to possibly take an early lead on the Browns. Instead, Cleveland recovered the fumble and put seven points on the board.
Joey Slye missed a 41-yard field goal late in the 4th quarter. That field goal would have made the game a one-possession contest that would lead to a potential game-changing onside kick attempt.
The special teams unit for the Texans must improve for this team to be able to win ball games. If turnovers and missed opportunities become the norm for Houston, it will become a long, long season for the Texans and their fans.