Welcome to the H
The Texans claimed two new players off the waiver wire this week: RB Eno Benjamin and WR Amari Rodgers.
Benjamin, who arrived Wednesday, practiced with the team on Thursday and spoke with the media. The former Arizona Cardinal said he turned to J.J. Watt and DeAndre Hopkins when making the transition to Houston. Watt gave Benjamin a list of suggested restaurants. Benjamin pulled out his phone and read Watt's recommendations:
- Kata Robata sushi
- B&B Butcher's
- El Tiempo
- Breakfast Klub
- Killen's BBQ
No surprises here if you've followed or covered Watt during his career in Houston.
The Lovie Connection
Lovie Smith and Ron Rivera will face each other on Sunday when the Washington Commanders come to town. The two NFL coaches go all the way back to Chicago where they coached together for the Bears. Rivera served as the Bears defensive coordinator from 2004 to 2006.
"Very good football relationship," Rivera said Smith. "Coach gave me my first opportunity as a coordinator."
Smith also has history with a few of Rivera's assistant coaches, OC Scott Turner and DBs Coach Christian Harris.
"Good football player, good football coach," Smith said of Rivera. "Good fundamental coach. His teams are going to play a certain way. We have a similar philosophy on how to win football games, so I know how's he's leading his team and you see them playing that way. The emphasis that they place on their defensive line, you kind of have to start there. They have not just given talk to that with picks and everything like that. It's pretty impressive when you look of how they're building their team. Emphasis on the running game on the offensive side of the football, so we know each other. When you work with someone – Chris Harris, their secondary coach, I coached in Chicago too, so I know a little bit. Scott Turner is doing a heck of the job. A little history with the Turner's too. A lot of things we know about each other."
As the NFL moves the Browns-Bills game indoors to Detroit's Ford Field due to a massive snowstorm, it's worth noting that the Texans remaining road games will be Miami, Dallas (indoors), Tennessee and Indianapolis (indoors). Houston might have already played its coldest game of the season last week at MetLife Stadium.
What is brick weather, you ask? According to Nico Collins, brick means, "like your body just numb or you can't feel nothing. So it's just a brick, just a little slang."
The Return of Nico
Collins made his return last week and hopes to keep building on the momentum brick-by-brick.
"It's like, pretty much just building like a foundation of a house. So you just keep stacking bricks, you know, just count your days, just continue to keep going and, you know, and just keep faith in God and just keep going, you know?"
Fun fact: Houston is 3-2 against Washington and has won the past three games in the series. The last time these two teams faced each other at NRG Stadium was two name changes ago. Alfred Blue blocked a punt and returned it five yards for a touchdown in the Texans 17-6 win to open the 2014 regular season.
And a decade ago...
No brick weather for the Texans, who will host the Commanders inside NRG Stadium on Sunday. Kickoff is set for noon CT on FOX-26 and SportsRadio 610. Browse tickets.