http://blog.chron.com/fantasyfootba...e-to-re-watch-first-half-of-texans-and-49ers/ Back to the DVR: Time to re-watch first half of Texans and 49ers First Quarter (Offense) 1-10, 14:55 - The interception that goes for a TD is clearly a bust in assignment by the Texans. Im not sure how it was supposed to work, but my guess is that somehow OLB Ahmad Brooks was supposed to be cut. It just looked like the play wasnt executed properly based on the fact that Matt Schaub clearly didnt think Ahmad Brooks was going to be there. 1-10, 14:45 - Simple swing pass to Arian Foster, but what is so special about it is the way that Foster is able to elude a tackler who has him dead to rights simply by sidestepping and getting up the field, all while not slowing down a single bit. When you hear anyone argue that Foster is a product of the system, laugh right in their face because the ability to sidestep tacklers while maintaining his play speed is what makes him so special. 1-10, 12:01 - The Texans run a zone play to the right with Derrick Ward but it gets stuffed for no yards. Im bringing this play up for you to watch two things. First, take a look at the No. 91 Ray McDonald and how he 2-gaps Mike Brisiel, gets the arms extended, reads the running back and shuts down the play. Text. Book. One other thing to watch is how Joel Dreesen handles his cut block. He wasnt able to cut his man, but from a technique standpoint, he does his job which is give ground to make up ground. Watch how Dreesen actually drops and runs behind the line of scrimmage in an attempt to create an angle to try and get his cut block. 2-10, 11:30 - This play-action pass to James Casey is completed but doesnt stand because of a defensive holding penalty. However, go back and watch how fast James Casey is through the hole and attacking the LB before getting into his route. While Casey may not be Vonta Leach as a blocker in the hole, he is going to be very effective out of the play-action. Most of Leachs play-action routes came outside of the tackles while Casey allows you the option of running the play-action inside the tackles which allows him to man up on inside linebackers as he drags the route outside. 1-10, 11:06 - Bootleg to the left with Owen Daniels dragging across the field WIDE OPEN, but Matt Schaub is hesitant to get it to him instead throwing underneath the Andre Johnson. There doesnt seem to be enough space between Johnson and Daniels route so Im curious if Dre cut his route off a little prematurely as opposed to continuing his route towards the sideline. (Defense) 1-10, 8:22 - We all know Antonio Smith had a great game, but take a look at how he gets driven off the line of scrimmage by LG Mike Iupati. Iupati is massive and is very powerful as a run-blocker so no shame in getting pushed off the line every once in awhile by a guy who is that big and strong. On a positive note, great job by Shaun Cody of standing the center up and shucking him to make the tackle. 3-5, 7:10 - I noticed for much of the first half that the Texans were lining CB Johnathan Joseph up in press coverage which helps to take away those easy underneath throws and slants. On this play, both CBs are in press and Connor Barwin uses a good-old fashioned thanks to the fact that he got his hands on tackle Joe Staley first. Staley has to get his punch out there and on Barwin or this will happen. (Offense) 1-10, 6:25 - Zone play to the right, but what is interesting about this play is that the Texans motion Owen Daniels to the left and set him up in the backfield in a full house set which is something I havent seen from the Texans. I like the look. 2-5, 5:50 - Here is another play-action pass that demonstrates why defenses are going to have a much tougher time against the pass with Casey as opposed to Leach in there. Casey is up on the LB quickly and the LB is thinking take on FB and get to RB but instead, he gets chipped by Casey and before he knows it, Casey is in his route and catching a pass on the way to a 17 yard gain. 1-10, 2:54 - Here is the running play where Arian Foster tweaks his hamstring, but that isnt what we are watching it for. The Texans love to use Kevin Walter and their tight ends to come across the formation and cut on backside defenders. On this play, RG Mike Brisiel and RT Eric Winston release inside and Brisiel gets to the second level on the inside LB so that he can open up the backside cut for Arian Foster, but to make sure that the Ray McDonald (#91) or the OLB doesnt scrape down the line and blow the cutback lane up, Daniels comes across the formation to cut any trash scraping down the line. 1-10, 1:58 - James Casey was called for two different holding penalties during the game which is an issue that he will have to correct, but this play is a great example of how different it will be having a FB who gets through the hole on the LB so quickly. Watch Casey shoot it on the LB on his iso block and stalemate him. Ive been pleasantly surprised at how Casey has handled himself in his new role. 2-7, 1:21 - Okay, this one is all about formation. The Texans have a two tight end package in the game with two wide receivers and a single set-back. This formation/package typically does not warrant the defense switching to a nickel package, but Ward ends up going in motion out in the flat and before the Niners know it, the Texans have five targets running routes putting pressure on the Niners base package. Andre Johnson sits down in the zone and catches a 9 yard pass for a first down. 2nd Quarter (Defense) 2-1, 15:00 - Antonio Smith shows why he is such a nightmare for guards to handle on this sack. As a 4-3 DE, Smith is very average at best as a pass rusher, but inside matched up against guards, hes going to be too much for many of them to handle. On this play, Im not sure what the protection is, but Iupati definitely could have used some help from Joe Staley as Antonio gets an outside track and runs it right into the QB. From the endzone look, we can see that Shaun Codys first step is toward the right guard which helped to engage Iupati just enough to free up Antonio who is very quick off the snap to begin with. Mario Williams also does a nice job of using his hands against RT Davis to get around him and get in on the pressure. 3-8, 14:32 - Here is another example of Antonio Smith ruining lives. Winning in the trenches is all about who can win with their hands and on this pass rush, Smith doesnt give the RG a target to put his hands on and, instead, is able to use his right hand to bat the linemans hands away as he makes a move inside to get after the QB once again. (Offense) 1-10, 14:04 - Take a close look at the formation and youll realize we just saw this one with the last spotlighted play of the first quarter above. The Texans start in 2 TE, 2 WR and 1 RB formation which keeps the Niners in a base package and before you know it, the Niners are in man coverage across the board against five targets. Kevin Walter hauls in the pass for a gain of 15 on this play. 4-1, 12:20 - This is just a simple QB sneak, but from the endzone shot, you can see that each offensive lineman takes their first step toward the center and creates a wedge to help push the interior on QB sneaks. This is obviously known as a wedge block. 2-8, 11:03 - This may look like a passing formation with Matt Schaub in the gun and with three wideouts, but actually, this is nothing more than the Texans creating a favorable matchup through formation once again. The Niners see the Texans are in 3 WR set and they send their nickel back out on the field which is exactly what the Texans want as this is just a lead running play that is disguised through formation and use of the shotgun. After the snap, Owen Daniels follow the pulling guard (Brisiel into the hole as D. Ward takes the inside handoff and follows both lead blockers on this power play. Once again, the Texans create a favorable running situation by manipulating the Niners into taking one of their big bodies out and replacing him with a defensive back. Its much easier to run against a 6-man front than a 7-man front. 3-3, 10:24 Good QBs know where they are going to go with the ball once they get a read on what the defense is going to do and on this play, Matt Schaub did just that. Once Schaub picked up on the LB blitz of the Niners, he knew Owen Daniels would be matched up on rookie OLB Aldon Smith and from that point it is simply about getting it blocked up and making sure that Schaub delivers an accurate pass to Daniels who is moving in space. This play gains 21 and the Texans knew they had a winner called before they even took the snap. 2-19, 9:10 - Much is made about Matt Schaub not being able to change plays within this offense, but that isnt completely true. On this play, notice that Schaub counts only 6 in the box (5 if you dont count the OLB who is lined up so wide) and Schaub gets the attention of the offensive line and Ben Tate as he changes a play to an inside handoff from the shotgun that gains 7 yards. Despite being a preseason game, this offense was being run extremely efficiently up to this point. (Defense) 1-10, 8:24 The Texans have had some issues stopping the run up the middle at times during the preseason, but on this play, JJ Watt is slanting inside which should give the NT help up the middle. Last week it seemed like Watt and the DEs were playing the outside gap, but in this game, I noticed them handling the inside gap a little more which helped to solidify the run defense. Watt makes the stop for a loss of 2 on the play. 3-2, 6:33 Connor Barwin gets pressure on the QB as he and Mario Williams get there at about the same time but a roughing blow to the head was called on Mario. Barwin sets Joe Staley up with a move outside and then a move back inside which is something that I thought he was really good at even as a rookie. However, hes going to start finding that tackles will play him for his inside move and make him prove that he can beat them with speed outside at some point in his career so it is important for Barwin to continue improving his edge pass rushing skills. 2-10, 3:11 Just a simple draw play here, but the Texans have to get better play from the LBs on this one especially from Cushing who gets tossed around pretty good. There were so many good things that happened in the first half that I had to throw one negative in there. 3-1, 2:33 - Yet another example of how things will potentially be different along the defensive line this year. On a short yardage run, JJ Watt shucks his blocker and gets to the RB just a shade inside the line of scrimmage which allows Cushing to get there and clean it up, stopping the Niners and forcing them to punt.