The Texans are on a six-game winning streak, but what they have accomplished in the last three games may be the key to another victory on Sunday.
No turnovers since Week 6.
Through the last three games, Deshaun Watson has completed 66.2 percent of his passes for 591 yards, eight touchdowns, no interceptions and a passer rating of 132.7. The Texans starting quarterback has made “a ton of improvement” in just his second season, according to head coach Bill O’Brien.
“He really understands football,” O’Brien said. “He’s a very, very smart guy, has a great instinct for the game, and I think if he can continue to play that way – not force the issue, just kind of keep getting us into the right play, keep playing the game the way it needs to be played as the game plays out – I think that’s something that he’s done really well.”
Ball security, while always a priority, becomes especially paramount when facing an opportunistic Washington Redskins defense in Week 11. Like Houston, Washington is also leading its division with a 6-3 record. Their defense ranks third in the NFL with 18 takeaways, nine interceptions and nine fumbles.
“Just managing the game, doing what I need to do to operate the offense, get the points on the board, move the ball down the field and protect the ball,” Watson said Wednesday. “That’s the biggest thing is the operation of protecting the ball and try to get points on the board.”
Despite giving up 501 net yards of offense in Week 10 at Tampa Bay, Washington’s defense held the Buccaneers to just one field goal and forced three turnovers in the fourth quarter alone.
“They’ve been doing a great job of getting the ball and getting their offense on the field so we’ve got to do a good job of protecting the ball and really executing,” Watson said.
The Texans currently have a plus-four turnover differential, forcing 15 takeaways while turning the ball over just 11 times. Houston is 4-1 when they have a positive turnover differential in a game this season.
Houston and Washington will face each other at FedExField on Sunday. Kickoff is set for 12 noon CT on CBS and SportsRadio 610.
Check out the best Week 9 images from Texans team photographer Zach Tarrant. Presented by Houston Methodist.