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Harris Hits: New York Jets | Week 14


This loss to the Jets was all of my worst fears congregating in one three hour afternoon. Let's dive into my Harris Hits from no doubt the toughest day of the 2023 season…for more reasons than one.

Throughout the week, I was worried about a number of things in this game.

-The Jets defense has superstar, STUD players where the Texans have suffered injuries or are seemingly deficient. 

-The Jets have one of the best interior defensive players in the NFL and the Texans really haven't run the ball well or been completely solid in pass protection in the middle of the line.

-The weather was a factor, but not as much as I thought it was going to be.

-The Jets would rally around QB Zach Wilson coming back into the lineup.

-The Jets have a healthy Garrett Wilson.

-The Texans have been beaten up and a handful of guys were slated to play that didn't practice much.

-The Texans were without two of their three best pass catchers against, arguably, the best secondary in the league.

View the best photos from the Week 14 matchup between the Houston Texans and New York Jets.

EVERY SINGLE ONE of those fears were proven true and it was even worse than I had first imagined. Why?

-The Texans lost Nico Collins, Blake Cashman and C.J. Stroud after having started the game with no Dalton Schultz and Tank Dell. Think of how many GREAT moments each one of those guys provided in the 2023 season. Now imagine them out for a full 60 minutes, a half or a quarter.

-With Nico out, and I mean out within the first five plays of the game, the Jets secondary just put straps on the remaining receivers…to the tune of four catches for 19 yards. The Texans WR struggled to get open, make contested catches and, generally, impact the game in a positive way.

-Stroud suffered a concussion after a hit from…the one guy that the Texans couldn't allow to wreck the game - Quinnen Williams. Due to being in concussion protocol, C.J 's status for the game in Tennessee is now up in the air.

-Once Cashman went out (even before that but mainly after he went out), the Jets threw crossers and threw to RB/TE on impactful plays throughout the game to take advantage of Blake's absence. Jets TE Tyler Conklin made two enormous catches with a Texan hanging on to him. Don't even get me started on TE Jeremy Ruckert's game, my goodness; he turned into Dalton Schultz. Jets RB Breece Hall had eight freakin' catches, including a TD. The ghost of Randall Cobb caught a crosser wide open for a touchdown. Jets OC Nathaniel Hackett found a measure of some redemption after this one.

On the bus to the airport and on the plane home, I was fairly upset to have stood all day in the rain and watch the Texans revert back to pre-DeMeco Ryans performance. Then, once we got on the bus to NRG, I thought, again, about those things I mentioned above.

-The Texans were without their top THREE pass catchers. C.J. can only do so much without them. Here's another thing, C.J. didn't throw the ball poorly at all. The narrative will be that Zach Wilson outplayed him and the numbers are slanted for sure, but watching the game back, C.J. was accurate for the most part and threw passes where he's been putting them all season long. The numbers won't show that at all, but watch each throw - there aren't many BAD ones, especially so in that weather.

-And, Sauce Gardner and D.J. Reed make lives tough on some of the best WR groups in the league WITH their top three pass catchers.

-And, Quinnen Williams has done that to EVERYONE.

-And, the Jets circled the wagons in a big way and Zach Wilson looked like he was at BYU again.

-And, it was the perfect storm after eight straight weeks of late game finishes.

The dam broke and it's imperative that the Texans have to fix it before heading to Nashville. See ya then, everyone

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