It looks like the Houston Texans are finally gaining some respect.
After dispatching numerous quality teams and barely falling short to an up and down New Orleans Saints team due to a furious drive by star QB Drew Brees, the Texans are ripe to conquer a rather underwhelming AFC South and make a push for playoff supremacy.
The Houston Texans have gotten it done on the ground at will these past few weeks, racking up numerous century marks in yardage by both backs in last years rushing champ RB Arian Foster and the rookie Ben Tate from Auburn.
Both players ran riot on a still irrelevant Cleveland Browns side eventually dispatching them in convincing fashion. Despite injuries to possibly their best players on either side of the ball in WR Andre Johnson and the newly converted LB Mario Williams, the Houston Texans have shown stellar versatility, with their stable of strong runners providing QB Matt Schaub with more than enough of a survival blanket in the absence of the leagues best receiver, and an improved coverage corps with first year Texan CB Jonathan Joseph assisting the pass rush by smothering top receivers. Players like Joseph, former Rookie of the Year LB Brian Cushing and solid rookie DE J.J. Watt have on the defensive side of the ball, made up for the missing stars in Williams and S Danieal Manning.
The next few games for the Texans all look like solid match ups, with the excellently defensive Cincinnati Bengals and contending Atlanta Falcons looking like the only teams capable of taking it to them. Next week the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are on the slate. Tampa’s rushing defense is suffering, leaving those in Houston salivating to watch a riveting day of smash mouth football. Andre Johnson still has a shot to make it back next week, leaving the ‘Bucs to pick their poison.
The Texans are far and beyond in their division. Only time will tell whether they can rip it up in the postseason, or if injuries catch up to them.