The Texans defense wants to get more takeaways in 2021. They got off to a nice start with the three in the preseason road win over the Packers.
Houston recovered a pair of Packers fumbles, and also picked off a pass in their 26-7 win over Green Bay at Lambeau Field.
After recording an NFL-worst nine takeaways in the 2020 regular season, the Texans set out to improve in that area. All offseason, in organized team activities (OTAs) and in training camp, Head Coach David Culley, Defensive Coordinator Lovie Smith and the players harped on the importance of getting the ball back. Against the Packers, that happened.
"Lovie's defense is built on basically creating turnovers, getting turnovers," Culley said. "We were able to get a few of those tonight. We were close to getting a few more.
Defensive lineman Jaleel Johnson, who pounced on a pair of Packers fumbles, said the Texans defense did a "good job of running to the ball", and that he was the beneficiary of being in the right place at the right time.
Johnson would finish with two tackles in addition to the two takeaways.
Cornerback Tremon Smith picked off a Kurt Benkert pass with 3:19 remaining in regulation. Smith came down with the pass to the left side at the Texans' 21-yard line, and five plays later the game was over with the Texans offense in victory formation.
Linebacker Kamu Grugier-Hill tallied a pair of tackles for loss, as well as a quarterback hit. He was enthused by what the defense was able to do to get the ball.
"That's the goal every game," Grugier-Hill said. "We have a standard of trying to get at least three. I think we got three tonight, so it's a great night."
The Texans will practice again Monday through Thursday at the Houston Methodist Training Center. They'll face the Cowboys in Arlington next Saturday night. Tune in on ABC13 Houston at 7 p.m. CT. Check here for local listings.
Check out game action from Texans Preseason Week 1 in Greenbay