Already an uphill battle

One game into the season, the Texans already are looking uphill. The schedule suddenly looks tougher. The prospects for a winning season don't look nearly as rosey as they did last week.

What went wrong?

Clearly, the Texans weren't ready to play. The coach himself said that. They also put the secondary together with tape and glue on opening day starting a not-ready-for-primetime Dunta Robinson and going without Jacques Reeves and Eugene Wilson. The defense played well against the run through three quarters but was horrible on third down as rookie Mark Sanchez looked polished. He constantly beat the pass rush with on-target throws that extended drives.

On the offensive side, Matt Schaub clearly was not himself. The offense produced zero points and zero first downs in the red zone. The running game was nowhere to be found as the offense was 200 yards below its average output of last year. Kris Jenkins was a one-man wrecking crew at nose guard. Schaub was harrassed often and unable to make the throws that made him a top-10 passer last year.

The Texans must get themselves going fast or the season will slide out of control. Beating Tennessee almost would be like erasing the Jets game, but that's a tall order. A 2-2 start is a minimal requirement toward achieving any of their goals. Following two home games after the Titans, the Texans play four of their next five on the road.

There is no way the Texans are as bad as they showed in the opener. But how good can they be when they don't step up and adequately compete in their own building? We saw enough good performances last year to know that this team has the goods to bang helmets with some of the league's better teams. They would be wise to start putting together some similar performances ASAP.

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