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Old 10-18-2011   #1
Blake
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Default Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

So it is no secret that Texans fans are a little frustrated with our current record. All 3 of our losses were very winnable games. I also think it is no secret that our defense has the ability to play well, but still doesnt know how to shut the door on some teams and limit scoring.

In our 3 wins we have given up an average of 10 points per game.

In our 3 losses we have given up an average of 31.3 points per game.

With or without AJ it is tough to score over 30 points per game in the NFL. Unless your name is Rodgers, Brees, Manning, or Brady its just not that common week in and week out. Even with the ridiculous amounts of passing going on all over the league, defenses still have to figure out a way to limit other teams scoring opportunities or keep them to field goals.

Take the 49ers for example. They have limited teams to scoring on average 14 points in their 5 wins. In their lone loss they gave up 27. Their story isnt Alex Smith. Its their no name defense. The Lions have given up 17.8 PPG in their 5 wins. 25 points in their lone loss.

The Texans have respectable numbers as far as yards given up through the air(221 ypg) and on the ground (107 ypg). They have 6 interceptions which ties us for 10th in the league.

As the head coach, this all falls under Gary's umbrella so he is the one held responsible for the performance of the entire team. The question is, how do we bend but not break? We have the players on the defensive side of the ball to be a standout defense. Wade Phillips knows the X's and O's and where to put the players. Why are we giving up over 31 PPG in our 3 losses?

7 Passing TD's (Tied for 17th with 7 clubs)
5 Rushing TD's (Tied for 17th with 7 clubs)

13 Field Goals Made (30th)

Is it our offense giving their team good field position? The punting team has punted 29 times (rank 21st) and pinned them inside the 20 yard line 9 times (ranked 8th). Matt Schaub has thrown 5 interceptions (ranked 12th with 6 clubs)

This Texans defense plays well at times each game which is shown by more 3 and outs than I can remember. But unless the Texans defense plays up to their talent level and potential the Texans are going nowhere fast.

The stats wont show it JUST YET due to our games against the inept Dolphins, and Colts, but this defense is new, but not so improved.
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Old 10-18-2011   #2
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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Originally Posted by Super Mario View Post
This Texans defense plays well at times each game which is shown by more 3 and outs than I can remember. But unless the Texans defense plays up to their talent level and potential the Texans are going nowhere fast.
The defense is playing at or slightly above expections thus far.

The offense is playing below.
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Old 10-18-2011   #3
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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Why are we giving up over 31 PPG in our 3 losses?
It is the level of competition in those games, compared to the competition in the wins. The offenses that were held in check were the Peytonless Colts, the Henne/Sporano led Dolphins, and a sputtering Steeler team. Whereas the losses came against teams with good offenses, i.e., Saints, Raiders and Ravens. Plus, the 31 PPG number reflects the 40 points the Saints hung on the Texans. Also, with Tenn, Jax, Clev and TB, up next, those numbers will improve.
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Old 10-18-2011   #4
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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Originally Posted by Rey View Post
The defense is playing at or slightly above expections thus far.

The offense is playing below.
I agree that the offense is playing below expectation, but I dont feel that they are the biggest reason we are .500. The defense needs to realize that they are talented, and have a good DC, and start making teams beg for a chance for 3 points rather than them expect it.

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It is the level of competition in those games, compared to the competition in the wins. The offenses that were held in check were the Peytonless Colts, the Henne/Sporano led Dolphins, and a sputtering Steeler team. Whereas the losses came against teams with good offenses, i.e., Saints, Raiders and Ravens. Plus, the 31 PPG number reflects the 40 points the Saints hung on the Texans. Also, with Tenn, Jax, Clev and TB, up next, those numbers will improve.
I hope you are right that they will improve. But as long as the defense keeps giving up the 3rd most field goals, and middle of the pack rushing and passing touchdowns, we will stay at .500 football.
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Old 10-18-2011   #5
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

Mario out, Reed's a rook, we are still unsettled @ CB2 forcing a square peg (KJ) into a round hole, JJoseph has been the luckiest CB in the NFL and Manning suffered a leg contusion.

Schaub is the new Carr with beat downs, #1 or2 WR in NFL out, JJ still inconsistent to nonexistent, musical chairs trying to keep a RB on field at 75%, RG has sprained ankle and Caldwell still can't beat him out & our punter squibbs an important punt.

We can be 6-3 soon or 3-6. Just another day in Paradise.
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Old 10-18-2011   #6
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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Mario out, Reed's a rook, we are still unsettled @ CB2 forcing a square peg (KJ) into a round hole, JJoseph has been the luckiest CB in the NFL and Manning suffered a leg contusion.

Schaub is the new Carr with beat downs, #1 or2 WR in NFL out, JJ still inconsistent to nonexistent, musical chairs trying to keep a RB on field at 75%, RG has sprained ankle and Caldwell still can't beat him out & our punter squibbs an important punt.

We can be 6-3 soon or 3-6. Just another day in Paradise.
I just got really depressed...
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Old 10-18-2011   #7
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

The key to a winning season is a coaching change.
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Old 10-18-2011   #8
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

two issues...we don't control the middle of the field as well as we should for an odd man front....aka, we need a stouter nose. When teams run on us late, its because our smaller quicker zero and one gappers are worn out by taking a pounding for 3 quarters....hence the long runs up the middle late.

Secondary plays a ton of man and we don't have top man cover guys. We have one top man cover guy. That's about it. Our S play has been poor. Quinn has been ok, but average and Manning has been a bit of a disappointment to me although he has raised the level of play. I'd call them average in zone, adequate in man.

When we load the gaps and play zero or 1 cover this team can stop the run early in the game, but teams that can protect the QB will continue to eat this secondary alive with our flawed man coverages.
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Old 10-18-2011   #9
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

How many games did the Texans lose by less than TD last year? And everyone said it was 100% the defense, despite the offense usually playing like crap in the first half.

So this year, the defense is holding the other team to FGs for most of the game, and the Texans are losing by larger margins. So that's the defense's fault too, for allowing too many FGs?

GTFO.
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Old 10-18-2011   #10
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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Originally Posted by eriadoc View Post
How many games did the Texans lose by less than TD last year? And everyone said it was 100% the defense, despite the offense usually playing like crap in the first half.

So this year, the defense is holding the other team to FGs for most of the game, and the Texans are losing by larger margins. So that's the defense's fault too, for allowing too many FGs?

GTFO.
dude, the Ratbirds destroyed the Texans D in the 4th quarter. They just imposed their will on us. They scored 30 points. That's not good d. We are playing BETTER defense. Way better...but we aren't there yet. I'm feeling good about the direction, so don't get me wrong on that.
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Old 10-18-2011   #11
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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dude, the Ratbirds destroyed the Texans D in the 4th quarter. They just imposed their will on us. They scored 30 points. That's not good d. We are playing BETTER defense. Way better...but we aren't there yet. I'm feeling good about the direction, so don't get me wrong on that.
No, I agree with that. But last year, the offense hung in there and fought in those games, and hung close, and the defense gave it up. In this year's losses, the offense hasn't done that. And frankly, the Ravens game was over at the end of the 3rd quarter.

The defense isn't there yet, but they're doing a helluva lot better than last year. And a lot of the people that ignored the offensive shortcomings last year seem to be ignoring the offensive shortcomings this year, despite the fact that they're perhaps even more pronounced.
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Old 10-18-2011   #12
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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Originally Posted by Vinny View Post
two issues...we don't control the middle of the field as well as we should for an odd man front....aka, we need a stouter nose. When teams run on us late, its because our smaller quicker zero and one gappers are worn out by taking a pounding for 3 quarters....hence the long runs up the middle late.

Secondary plays a ton of man and we don't have top man cover guys. We have one top man cover guy. That's about it. Our S play has been poor. Quinn has been ok, but average and Manning has been a bit of a disappointment to me although he has raised the level of play. I'd call them average in zone, adequate in man.

When we load the gaps and play zero or 1 cover this team can stop the run early in the game, but teams that can protect the QB will continue to eat this secondary alive with our flawed man coverages.
Its hard to argue with that logic. The only question I would pose to you would be, how have Wade Phillips D's done in the run D traditionally? He usually likes to play a penetrating NT as opposed to a clogging one. Penetrating NTs tend to be smaller...Clogging penetrating NTs like Jamal Williams and BJ Raji unfortunately don't come around all that much.

I agree with you on the man to man CB play. Every week I see Joseph line up right on the line of scrimmage and CB #2 giving the receiver a 5+ yard cushion. I wonder if it is time to move Quinn back to CB and let him play Man coverage.
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Old 10-18-2011   #13
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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No, I agree with that. But last year, the offense hung in there and fought in those games, and hung close, and the defense gave it up. In this year's losses, the offense hasn't done that. And frankly, the Ravens game was over at the end of the 3rd quarter.

The defense isn't there yet, but they're doing a helluva lot better than last year. And a lot of the people that ignored the offensive shortcomings last year seem to be ignoring the offensive shortcomings this year, despite the fact that they're perhaps even more pronounced.
The Texans step over dollars picking up pennies more often than not. It's like they can't get their collective minds around the big picture because they are busy putting out fires all the time.

This team is a better team than last season, but lets be honest....if there was a legit playoff team in this divison there is no way this unit goes to the playoffs this season. Hopefully we can jump in that window of opportunity and not shoot ourselves in the foot.
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Old 10-18-2011   #14
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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The Texans step over dollars picking up pennies more often than not. It's like they can't get their collective minds around the big picture because they are busy putting out fires all the time.

This team is a better team than last season, but lets be honest....if there was a legit playoff team in this divison there is no way this unit goes to the playoffs this season. Hopefully we can jump in that window of opportunity and not shoot ourselves in the foot.
And that is what pisses me off after 6 yrs of Kubiak and 10 years of Texans football. Honestly, the loss to the Ravens isn't all that distressing. It's the loss to the Ravens, piled on top of the loss to the Raiders, piled on top of a 6-10 season last year, perpetual mediocrity-to-suckiness, and a failure to bring in a group of people that will fix the GD problem.

At any rate, to get back on topic, I don't think the defense is any more key at this point than the offense. Neither side is pulling their weight, but neither side has been a complete disaster. They're both about a 4.5 on a scale of 1-10, IMO.
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Old 10-18-2011   #15
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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How many games did the Texans lose by less than TD last year? And everyone said it was 100% the defense, despite the offense usually playing like crap in the first half.

So this year, the defense is holding the other team to FGs for most of the game, and the Texans are losing by larger margins. So that's the defense's fault too, for allowing too many FGs?

GTFO.
I agree.

This isn't a defense vs offense thing.

Both units fail to make plays that win games. The offense this past Sunday was pretty close to garbage IMO. Lots of people looking at the units like they are separate entities, but that really isn't the case.

Defense forced two turnovers and we have been consistently taking the ball away from opponents. If the offense sustains some drives, puts points on the board it affects the other offense. A lot of 3 and outs when you are supposed to be an offensive team is not beneficial to the defense.

Ravens can afford some turnovers and some 3 and outs because their defense is their strong suit. This is an offensive team. The offense needs to be the one to carry the team.

And in no way am I excusing the defense. They have plenty of warts...But overall, they have been a little better than I thought they'd be and the offense has performed a little worse than I thought they would.

I hate to go Denny Green, but "THEY ARE WHO WE THOUGHT THEY WERE"...the defense that is...

If the offense doesn't start actually playing like an elite or semi-elite offense then that puts too much pressure on a defense that we all knew would have it's struggles.
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Old 10-18-2011   #16
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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Whereas the losses came against teams with good offenses, i.e., Saints, Raiders and Ravens.
c'mon!!!!

Oakland's "good" offense is centered around Darren McFadden. We controlled him to the tune of 56 yards. Your 24th ranked passing offense had nothing to do with the 29 points we gave up. 4 of those field goals were made after 3 & outs.
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Old 10-18-2011   #17
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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Its hard to argue with that logic. The only question I would pose to you would be, how have Wade Phillips D's done in the run D traditionally? He usually likes to play a penetrating NT as opposed to a clogging one. Penetrating NTs tend to be smaller...Clogging penetrating NTs like Jamal Williams and BJ Raji unfortunately don't come around all that much.

I agree with you on the man to man CB play. Every week I see Joseph line up right on the line of scrimmage and CB #2 giving the receiver a 5+ yard cushion. I wonder if it is time to move Quinn back to CB and let him play Man coverage.
Last year Dallas had the 23 ranked defense in the NFL. 26th against the pass, and only one team gave up more points per game last year...that was the Denver Broncos. I don't know if you know this but last year's Texans defense gave up less points than the Cowboys did. Dallas was only average vs the run last year...middle of the pack. Nothing special, and certainly not in line with the propaganda you hear from the Texans Marketing department.
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Old 10-18-2011   #18
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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I agree.

This isn't a defense vs offense thing.

Both units fail to make plays that win games. The offense this past Sunday was pretty close to garbage IMO. Lots of people looking at the units like they are separate entities, but that really isn't the case.

Defense forced two turnovers and we have been consistently taking the ball away from opponents. If the offense sustains some drives, puts points on the board it affects the other offense. A lot of 3 and outs when you are supposed to be an offensive team is not beneficial to the defense.
Twice in the 4th Qtr the defense gave the offense the ball with a manageable score. 19-14, twice. That's as good as it gets when we're supposed to be an offensive team.

If we can run time off the clock & score 10 points on those drives, then we've got a rested defense that could probably get us one more stop.

I agree, this is supposed to be an offensive team & they're being outplayed by a half-cocked defense missing their best player.
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Old 10-18-2011   #19
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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Last year Dallas had the 23 ranked defense in the NFL. 26th against the pass, and only one team gave up more points per game last year...that was the Denver Broncos. I don't know if you know this but last year's Texans defense gave up less points than the Cowboys did. Dallas was only average vs the run last year...middle of the pack. Nothing special, and certainly not in line with the propaganda you hear from the Texans Marketing department.
Ok. Good to know. Just out of curiosity, how does that stack up against Phillip's other Dallas, SD, Denver, and Buffalo teams? Has he historically had average or below average run D's?
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Old 10-18-2011   #20
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Default Re: Texans Defense - The Key to a winning season

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Originally Posted by Doppelganger View Post
Ok. Good to know. Just out of curiosity, how does that stack up against Phillip's other Dallas, SD, Denver, and Buffalo teams? Has he historically had average or below average run D's?
I'd have to look it up, but if Phillips has the talent I know he will produce. IMO, he still needs some help since he loves to play gap control and lots of cover 1....that takes good cover corners. In today's game that means you need THREE of them. We have one good one.

Phillips scheme works and it's just gonna have issues until we can control the middle of the field and get at least one more man cover guy. By the end of the year I think Phillips will be able to scheme around most of the limitations. If everyone is healthy we have a dynamite front 7 except for the NT. By next season it may be the best in the league,...so I see good things as Wade gets more practices in.
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