Houston Texans 2011 Review: Top 5 Stories of The Year
Posted on 12/19/2011 12:43:38 AM
The Houston Texans have completed at lot of "firsts" for their franchise in the year 2011. From a rushing champion, to a top defense, to hosting a playoff game, these are the top five stories of the year for the Texans:
5. Peyton Manning’s Injury
Peyton Manning’s neck injury, which has so far kept him from playing in a single game this regular season, has definitely helped the Texans 2011 regular season bid for the division title. The Colts, with Manning, had won the division seven times out of the nine seasons since the Texans joined the NFL. Manning has also posted a career record of 16-2 against the Texans. So the Texans, dominated by Manning throughout their franchise history, have no doubt benefited this season from the injury to Manning.
4. Arian Foster Wins Rushing Crown
On January 2nd, 2011, the last game of the 2010 regular season, the Texans hosted their division-rivals, the Jacksonville Jaguars. In this game, running back Arian Foster ran for 180 yards on 31 carries, and added two touchdowns on his way to being the leading rusher in the league that season. Foster, in his second year after being signed as an undrafted free agent, was the first ever Texans player to win the rushing crown.
3. Quarterback Quagmire
The Texans have had an interesting quarterback situation throughout the 2011 regular season. Starting quarterback Matt Schaub suffered a season-ending injury in Week 10 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. During their bye week the next week, the Texans signed Matt Leinart. He was injured for the season in their Week 12 game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Third string rookie quarterback T.J. Yates stepped in and has taken the starting job since. In the next few weeks, the Texans would release Kellen Clemens in favor of veterans Jake Delhomme and Jeff Garcia to back up Yates.
2. Wade Phillips Is Hired As Defensive Coordinator
On January 5th, the Texans hired former Dallas Cowboys head coach Wade Phillips to take over as defensive coordinator after the firing of Frank Bush. Phillips’ hiring has made an immediate impact for the Texans defense this season, going from 30th in overall defense from last season, to first in the league this year. The Texans currently rank third against the pass, fourth against the rush and are giving up an average of 16 points per game, good for fourth-best in the league. The hiring of Phillips has been the best offseason acquisition by the Texans organization for the 2011 season.
1. Texans Win Division, Clinch Playoffs
On December 11th, the 2011 Texans reached two milestones never before accomplished by any franchise team before them: win the AFC South and make the postseason. Yates led the Texans back from a 19-10 fourth quarter deficit against the Cincinnati Bengals, to a 20-19 victory that won them the division title. With the division title, the Texans will also host a playoff game in the wild-card round. The city of Houston has to be thrilled.
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