Deshaun Watson Era Begins

Sooo….it was a long afternoon for Texan fans.  We got whup’d by a team that is normally used to pad the stats and the win total column.

The Texans looked surprisingly bad.  The vaunted defensive front seven gave up 155 yards rushing and made Blake Bortles look like a legitimate NFL quarterback….which he has not been up until today.

The “work in progress” offense, having gotten rid of the source of all their problems (Brock Osweiller), looked slow and uninspired with Tom Savage at the helm.  They ended the day giving up 4 turnovers, gaining less than 100 yards on the ground, and only 203 yards total on the day.

Perhaps it was a Harvey hangover.  I think everyone in this city is a little fatigued frankly.

Several players were added to the injury list, many with concussions.  It’s going to be tricky to field an offensive squad for the quick turnaround game on Thursday in Cincinnati.

And so, in the near term, there will be much boo hooing about how bad the Texans are this year but….

…enter Deshaun Watson.

“Hooper….what exactly can you do with this fancy quarterback of yours?”

It seems clear to me that Watson has some tools that Savage does not.  The argument for giving Savage the starting job over Watson has been wrapped up in “experience in the system” and “protecting the rookie’s psyche” talk.  After watching this game I don’t think either of those are valid arguments anymore.  Savage has been, and remains, slow running the offense and getting rid of the ball.   He also has almost zero mobility in the pocket.  Those are deadly weaknesses behind a below average offensive line missing their one jewel in Duane Brown.  Watson started the second half and made some mistakes as rookies will do.  But the game did not look too big for him.  There were no happy feet, no panic, no run for your life moments.  He did, however, use his athleticism to keep some plays alive.  And perhaps most importantly, his teammates looked energized by his presence on the field.

Leadership is no small thing.

Where this season will go has yet to be determined.  But wherever it goes I hope it goes there with Deshaun Watson running the offense, getting all the starter reps in practice…

….and developing.

Anything else is just putting off the inevitable.

(Oh, and by the way, you lost the bet Rick Smith.  Go get Duane Brown.)