Matt Schaub and the Houston Texans dominated Tennessee and improved to 4-0 for the first time in franchise history. Houston led Tennessee 14-7 at the half but blew the game open in the second half with the help of a defensive surge for a final score of 38-14. Let’s take a closer look at the Hero and Zero of this Week 4 matchup.
My game ball goes to the Houston defense and not just because they helped me out with 23 fantasy points either.
Houston has heavily relied on its offense since the days of David Carr. But that’s been a different story since Wade Phillips left the Dallas Cowboys and joined the Texans in 2011. Today’s performance proved why Houston finished third in total defense last year and is among the best this year.
Despite giving up 141 rushing yards to Chris Johnson, the Texans kept the ball on Tennessee’s side of the field and generated turnovers. Both Kareem Jackson and Danieal Manning recorded pick six’s today and J.J. Watt joined the fun by recovering a Matt Hasselbeck fumble. Houston’s defensive success came from their ability to get to the quarterback with 4 sacks and 5 hits. It’s this pressure that allowed the defense to force 3 turnovers and score 2 touchdowns.
Wade Phillips and the Texans defense will focus their sites on Mark Sanchez and the Jets for next week’s game. After being shut out by the 49ers, the Jets have a lot to work on if they’re going to produce anything against a tough Texans defense.
If any one player is to blame for this week’s horrendous loss, you know it’s not going to be Chris Johnson. You would think that 141 yards rushing would open up the pass game for Tennessee, apparently not. After starting quarterback, Jake Locker, suffered a shoulder injury midway through the 1st quarter, Matt Hasselbeck was brought in.
Hasselbeck finished the game with 193 yards on 25 attempts, 2 interceptions, and a quarterback rating of 84.2. Hasselbeck only generated 1 touchdown before trash-time because both his interceptions were thrown in Houston territory. Take away Houston’s two defensive touchdowns, factor in a couple of scores for Tennessee, and this blowout turns into a nail biter. Regardless of what COULD have happened, Hasselbeck’s 3 turnovers cost Tennessee points and momentum which makes him the zero of the game.