*Here are Five Things to Watch when the Texans face the Broncos on Saturday night (8 p.m. CT on ABC-13/KTRK) in Denver.
1. Who’s In, Who’s Out: For the second week in a row, the Texans have practiced against another team. And they’ve practiced hard.
Last week against the Falcons, and this week in Denver versus the Broncos, Houston suited up and
“We’ve gotten a lot of work out here in the three days,” head coach Bill O’Brien said. “That’s what’s different then in the past. In the past, when you didn’t work against a team, you would certainly want to probably have your first teams go in the third game of the preseason. But when you come out here, yesterday we ran 60 team plays against each other, the day before the same thing, today about probably 40 team plays against each other.”
General manager Rick Smith agreed, and emphasized that “the focus is to line up in September when it counts.”
However, running back
2. Extracurriculars- A flag, or two, or more for unsportsmanlike conduct is a near certainty for Saturday night.
Earlier that day, Watt manhandled Denver right tackle Chris Clark in a 1-on-1 drill, and Clark ripped Watt’s helmet off, drawing a flag. On Thursday, Watt continuously embarrassed the Broncos offensive linemen, and they began taking cheap shots. Expect some of that to carry over into the game, but don’t expect Watt to ever be an instigator.
“I don’t really get into in to fights,” Watt said. “That’s why when somebody hits me, I don’t feel the need to hit back because you can turn on the film, see what happened.”
Boswell missed a pair of extra points in the win over the Falcons, but O’Brien said the battle for the spot is far from over.
Both, as well as punter
4. QB Progress- How much each of the three quarterbacks play is unknown, but O’Brien wants to see them continue to move the offense efficiently.
Twice last week, starter
“It was better,” O’Brien said. “Again, I don’t think it’s where it needs to be yet.”
5. Pass Rush- Numerous Texans not named Watt or
Whether or not the Texans can generate a pass rush against Peyton Manning and company will go a long way in determining how long the secondary can hold up against one of the NFL’s premier passing attacks.