Vandermeer's View: Fan Mailbag

It's that time again – Your questions (to Vandermeer'sView@HoustonTexans.com) possibly win you a Royal Purple Prize Pack and (maybe) some knowledge for the water cooler conversations.

And we're off…

*Voice, *

Will Fitzpatrick be back next year. And will he start or will we draft someone or both?

James, Pearland

James, he's under contract so let's assume he's back. As far as starting goes, let's see if the team resigns Ryan Mallett. If they draft a quarterback, I can't see a rookie starting unless there were injuries.

This will be the biggest story line of the off season: Does Mallett come back? Does he start? How do Fitz and Savage fit in? And do they draft a QB?

I'll throw a wild card in there – What if Keenum or Lewis wins and looks good these last two weeks?

There, I said it. Should be interesting.


*Marc, *

Bill O'Brien said on his show that he thought the coaching staff has done a good job this year. Do you agree?

Carter, Cypress

Well, they are a lock to at least tie for the biggest turnaround in wins for 2014 (2 to at least 7). The fact is, they're in the mix with two games to go after having the worst record in the NFL last year. They know they dropped a couple of games they probably had to have but they've showed a ton of improvement from last year while implementing a totally new system with new quarterbacks.

Fitzpatrick had his best year ever (11th in QB rating and 6th in yards per attempt). Having said that, we'll never know what might have happened if Mallett had stayed healthy. The Texans have had only five .500 or better seasons in the previous 12 years. If O'Brien can get this campaign to at least 8-8. That's a nice step, coming off the catastrophic 2013 season. A winning season would be only their fourth in franchise history.


*Marc, *

What kind of chance do you give Keenum or Lewis this weekend?

*Emily, Pearland

This is going to be tough. Whoever it is will have to be granted an effective running game and a defensive performance similar to the one the Texans put out against the Colts. But that's a tall order no matter who is playing QB. Baltimore is third in the NFL vs the run. And on offense they're 5th running it with Gary Kubiak's attack. Joe Flacco is having the best year of his career with this new system and the Ravens are a virtual lock to have their highest scoring season ever.

The mystery QB will have to be very good on third down and make some things happen with his legs. Based on the circumstances, it's by far the most difficult game of the year for your Texans.

Emily wins!

Have a great weekend!

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