The last time the Houston Texans beat the Kansas City Chiefs was in 2010. In the franchise’s history, they have played the Chiefs a total of 8 times and lost in 5 of those games. After being embarrassed at home by the Chiefs in the AFC wild card game last year 30-0, many fans are looking for redemption.
To beat the Chiefs the Texans are going to have to excel at all three areas of the game. Special teams play must be solid, the offense is going to have to make big plays, and their defense will have to play at the level they did in the latter part of last year. They have all of the tools, but they will have to bring them all together to win.
During their last matchup, the Texans had 5 turnovers. This was largely due to Brian Hoyer forgetting what team he was playing for but that being said, the Chiefs are ball hawks. They finished 2nd in the league in turnover differential so the Texans must protect the ball if they want to stay in this game.
Special teams looked much improved in the first game but every Texan fan remembers the first play of the wild card game. A kickoff return for a touchdown. It took the air right out of the crowd and I am sure the team as well. Special teams has to be better and if I were the coach, I would kick it out of the back of the end zone until special teams get settled in.
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The Texans defense looked great in the second half of the Chicago Bears game in week one. That must continue as I expect a slow start on offense again. If they can prevent the turnovers and limit the amount of time the defense is on the field, they should be good. The defense will need to show up early and pick back up where they left off in the preseason by putting the turnover margin in the Texans favor.
The one thing that surprised me about the Texans offense last week was that Brock Osweiler came out slinging. He threw the ball to 8 different players. While the throws were not always perfect, spreading the ball around and utilizing the run game will open up some big plays. The Chiefs will be missing their star pass rusher, Justin Houston, which will also benefit the Texans offense, so I expect to see good things from the group on Sunday.
The Texans are a game plan offense and as fans it is important to understand that because they will wear teams down over time. Expect the Texans to continue to get better as the game goes on. The important thing is to keep it competitive and not get behind early on. If they can manage that, they can leave the field with a win and start the 2016 season 2-0.