Vandermeer's View: A brand new ballgame


Ryan Mallett made his Texans starting debut, rookie Alfred Blue carried the ball a franchise record number of times and J.J. Watt had another monster game. But those items might not even be the best story.

The Texans offensive line played a break out game that could be a telling sign of what's to come in the final six outings. Mallett wasn't sacked, on his way to a 30 throw, two touchdown game and Blue and Jonathan Grimes carried the rock for a combined 213 yards.

The Texans looked refreshed and recharged after their bye.

If you didn't know Mallett was starting his first NFL game, you would have never guessed. He handled himself with the poise of a veteran, directing traffic as the conductor of an offense that put up over 400 yards against a division leading team in a hostile environment.

The fact that the Texans ran so well without Arian Foster makes you wonder if the whole offensive product has turned a corner and is finally hitting a grove after getting a new quarterback and a reenergized offensive line.

Bill O'Brien has said you never really know what a team is truly like until after Thanksgiving. Well, it's almost Turkey day and maybe the Texans will get on a roll.

They have four of their last six games at NRG Stadium plus road tilts at Jacksonville and Indy.

Jadeveon Clowney is healthy and Brian Cushing looked spry in his return after missing a couple of outings. Get Arian Foster and Kareem Jackson back, keep Mallett improving and we just might have something special.

Sunday's win over Cleveland wasn't a masterpiece but it was a complete win over a winning team and served notice that no one should rule out January football for the Texans just yet.

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