The Texans play the New England Patriots this Saturday the 19th at the NRG stadium for the first time this preseason. The Patriots are the reigning Super Bowl champs, so the competition will be good for fellow rookies and role players. The Texans recently just got off practice with the Patriots for the past week, as the players and coaches had a joint practice before the game for this weekend multiple times. Everyone is probably ready to see the home team come back and play in our stadium. These are the things you should be looking out for this weekend:
The QB Battle.
How would anything else be number 1? This is the biggest headline for training camp all year. Who will be under center come week 1? Tom Savage? Deshaun Watson? The fan favorite answer is Deshaun Watson, as he is the first Texans QB first round pick in a long time. The fans are eager to see a young kid come in and be able to run the show. Most of the coaches are leaning towards Tom Savage due to his familiarity with the system, and being groomed for 4 years now. This is a respectable choice, but Watson is coming in close. This weekend, expect Savage to get some first team reps, but Watson should be getting some this weekend unlike the last preseason game where he only landed with the second and third team. Expect him to run some drills and to get the same amount of snaps as last time too. This weekend won’t decide who starts, but it can help both players arguments for it. I assume everyone will be watching this battle.
The Defensive corners.
Now, I understand most of these corners that played last week against the Panthers were 2nd and even 3rd stringers. That still doesn’t excuse the poor play they had last week giving up big plays down the field especially late in the game. We haven’t had a season where all of our corners and safeties have been 100% on the field together all year. Injuries happen, and the next man needs to be ready to step up. That is what worries me with some of these corners on the team. Nelson was the main target against the Panthers giving up over 150 yards on pass plays and 1 touchdown. The other corners just about held their ground and looked well, but still had some obvious tacking issues, and staying in front of their man. Hopefully, this was fixed by Vrabel this week.
The New WR’s
Bruce Ellington is the new “big name” WR that was just recently signed to the team. He had a previous stint with the 49ers for 3 years, but lacked catching ability. Ellington has speed, and has the potential to make big plays if he can work on his hands. He is essentially an older Will Fuller. This is perfect as the Texans had lost Will Fuller for the first couple of months due to a neck injury. Speed is everything the Texans need and Ellington can bring it. Hopkins and Miller will not play this game, so the other practice squad, and next in line WRs (Strong) need to step up to prove they can replace whoever they need too.