It's hard to believe that the Texans could put up 36 and 38 points in their match ups with Tennessee and lose both. But they did.
It's also hard to believe they could have the ball at the two yard line twice, late against Indy, and lose both games. But they did.
The Texans lost 12 games in 2020 with eight of them being by a touchdown or less. That's how close things are in the NFL. Houston didn't make enough pivotal plays to come out ahead in those nail-biters and the body of work means a full overhaul is coming.
We all knew last year was tough to swallow, with a 24-0 lead that turned into a blowout loss in the divisional round. The Texans were still considered contenders for the AFC South title and more this season. But an 0-4 start brought on a coaching change and the team could never get rolling.
Back to back wins against the Patriots and Detroit gave hope for some momentum. What followed was a five game losing streak on the way out with four of the losses basically coming at the buzzer.
It's up to a new staff to get things moving forward again and there's plenty to work with. Deshaun Watson threw for more yards than anyone in the NFL and more TDs than the team has ever registered. He plays the most important position on the squad and there's already a top-of-the-line left tackle in the building.
Of course there are many questions to answer up and down the roster. The fact is that even with all the issues and injuries this season, the Texans were tantalizingly close to being a real threat to win the division. If you're not convinced of this, ask the Colts and the Titans how they felt about their extremely close shaves with Houston.
Sunday's finale ends an era that saw seven seasons, five of them winning campaigns and four playoff appearances with two wins. The organization is still ahead of the game compared to most. The key now is to bounce back fast, like the 2-14 to 9-7 turnaround from 2013 to 2014.
Many of the pieces are here to get that accomplished. But it's easier said than done. The right hires must be made. The draft, with no first and second round picks, has to be expertly orchestrated. Free agency has to be navigated well.
There are so many storylines to what is about to happen. We will cover them all. For now, we reflect on a season with a lot of near misses and some moments that give us hope for the future.
Houston Texans take on the Tennessee Titans in Week 17 of the 2020 NFL Season.