Sloppy performance wastes great defensive effort
The Texans let a golden opportunity to improve to 3-0 on the season slip out of their hands on Sunday. They outgained the Ravens 264 to 236, they had more first downs on offense (18 to 16), and held the run-heavy Ravens to 75 yards rushing on 31 attempts (2.4 yards per attempt).
And yet the Texans still found a way to lose.
The Texans were as flat as they have been all season in Baltimore, and it showed in the penalty yardage. The Texans were penalized 14 times for 113 yards. Yes, there were a couple of questionable pass interference calls, but the Texans were flagged anytime they got something going offensively.
Quarterback Matt Schaub could not get into the flow of the game offensively — there is never an excuse in the NFL to go 3-12 on third down. There is no way to sustain offensive success throughout the game when you can’t convert on third down.
The Texans had a great opportunity to put the game away early. Twice, the Texans were in the red zone and failed to put a touchdown on the board. That game would have been different if it was 10-0 or 14-0. Instead, two long drives resulted in a 6-0 lead that can be erased on one play.
The Texans need to find a way to put the ball in the end zone when they have great scoring opportunities. It is too hard to rely on hitting big plays to score touchdowns. When the team does a great job to go 65 yards, they need to find a way to buckle down and get those last 10 yards.
This defeat is tough to handle, especially when you are traveling Seattle and San Francisco in the next two weeks, but I think San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick and company are beatable, and Houston’s Reliant Stadium might be one of the only stadiums that rival Seattle when it comes to a noise and fan environment.