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It’s not like we didn’t know who the Texans would be playing. But seeing the actual order of events makes it real and stirs reaction.
Opening the Bill O’Brien era at home is a good thing. It’s too bad that it has to be against a rejuvenated RG III. However, there are no easy outs in the NFL, as we know all too well from 2013. In fact, the author is fully aware that the schedule ‘is what it is’ and the good teams have to deal with a ton of challenges each season.
Houston gets the benefit of playing two other last place teams in their division with Oakland and Buffalo. That means there’s no Tom Brady or Peyton Manning to deal with. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t some big hurdles to overcome.
The back to back road games at Oakland and New York Giants are a tough draw because of long travel on opposite coasts after a late Sunday return from the Bay Area.
Having the Colts on a Thursday at home is nice but it follows a road tilt with Dallas and precedes a ‘fake bye.’ with no action until the following Monday night with a game at Pittsburgh. You would love the bye after the MNF game but the league just can’t do that for everyone.
The Monday Nighter is the biggest eye opener. It’s a mild surprise that the Texans would get one but you thought, for projected competitive balance, it might be at home if they did.
Traveling the next week after the Pittsburgh trip is an unexpected challenge that will be difficult. The Texans will get in around 3am Tuesday and get back on the charter Saturday to play their arch rivals.
After the prime time ‘back-to-back,’ it’s noon starts the rest of the way unless something gets flexed.
Playing the last two, at home, against Baltimore and Jacksonville is a plus and we all hope there’s a lot on the line.
There’s plenty of intrigue here with Robert Griffin coming to Houston and the games at Pittsburgh and Dallas. There’s also the unofficial Texans reunion tour with games against opponents featuring DeMeco Ryans, Connor Barwin, Matt Schaub, Antonio Smith, Mario Williams, Ben Tate, Owen Daniels and Gary Kubiak, to name a few.
No matter who’s on the slate, the season can’t come soon enough. And the draft too, for that matter.