Protection up front important for Deshaun Watson

The protection for Deshaun Watson has improved.

Just ask him.

"Oh, for sure," the quarterback said Wednesday. "I mean, those guys are doing a great job."

Watson was talking about an offensive line that's taken a fair share of criticism. He was dropped for a sack seven times on Sunday at Indianapolis, but Watson pointed the blame back at himself for some of those miscues.

"A lot of the sacks I put upon me getting rid of the ball or holding the ball too long or trying to create a play where I probably could have thrown the ball away or ran for extra yardage, two or three yards," Watson said. "But, those guys are doing a heck of a job and they keep battling each and every week, and they're improving, building chemistry, enjoying the game, having fun and just getting better every week."

Head coach Bill O'Brien said Monday that two of the seven sacks could be attributed to offensive line mistakes. He stressed that the group up front needed to keep the focus the same.

"There's a lot to build on," O'Brien said. "But it's all about improvement and how can we improve between now and Sunday to play very well against a very good Cowboy team."

Kendall Lamm started at right tackle in Indianapolis, after Julién Davenport was the starter in Weeks 2 and 3, in place of Week 1 starter Seantrel Henderson. Although there have been changes, O'Brien explained what needs to happen during the week of preparation.

"We have to do a good job of making sure that they have multiple reps in a row together so they're not in there for one rep and then we're moving them on the next rep," O'Brien said. "So, we do a lot of planning, strategic planning, when it comes to practice of those guys being together so that we have as much continuity as possible."

Dallas brings DeMarcus Lawrence and his NFL-best 5.5 sacks to town for Sunday Night Football. The defensive end is following up a 2017 that saw him rack up 14.5 sacks.

"Great length, athleticism," O'Brien said of Lawrence. "He plays very hard, plays hard on every snap. He's chasing the ball sideline to sideline, chasing the quarterback. He can wreck a game."

The Texans will practice again on Thursday and Friday, before hosting the Cowboys Sunday night at NRG Stadium.

The Houston Texans roster in photos. (Updated 6/14/2021)

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