Coming off their bye week the Houston Texans defeated the Buffalo Bills 21-9 in what was mostly a one sided affair on Sunday October 4th at Reliant Stadium. The Texans moved a record of 7-1 with the win in which all 3 of the Texans big offensive weapons had pretty good games against a lacking defensive attack from the Bills.
QB Matt Schaub had another stellar game staying clean most of the game, and moving his team down the field effortlessly against a defense that had no plan to stop what might be the best all around offensive team in football this year. Schaub completed passes to 7 different receivers and was 19-27 for 268 yards and 2 TD’s on Sunday. Both TD passes went to TE’s Owen Daniels and Garrett Graham. Schaub, who did make mistakes in the loss against the Packers earlier in the year has been sharp in the games since. In the 2 games since the Texans last loss Schaub has been 45-64 (65%) on passes and thrown 4 TD’s to 0 INT’s. TE Owen Daniels had another good game and is on pace to set a couple career records stat wise for himself this season if he stays healthy and keeps up this pace. He’s on pace to have 957 yards receiving and 9 receiving TD’s this season. Daniels might be considered one of the more consistent players on the team because of the age on the outside until this season. And after years of being the check down when WR’s Andre Johnson and Kevin Walter get much of the focus Daniels has been the primary target off of play action plays to this point.
Both RB Arian Foster and WR Andre Johnson had good games as well, as they both eclipsed the 100 yard mark in their field of play. Foster ended with 24 carries, 111 yards and a TD. Foster has been everything the team has needed this season. Carrying the rushing load basically alone with the injuries to his back up Ben Tate. With the TD this week Foster now has a league leading 10 on the year. All this without Foster putting the ball on the ground at all since a preseason game against Carolina when rookie LB Luke Kuechly stripped Foster. WR Andre Johnson was seeing a lot of soft coverage and 1 on 1 all game long against the Bills on Sunday. He and Schaub took advantage of this all game with Johnson finishing with 8 catches and 118 yards. Johnson, who many say has lost a step didn’t look like it against the Bills. But it was easy to see that when he is covered softly or not doubled his chances of big plays go up tremendously. Johnson who is far from the center piece of the offense as he was for so many years is still on pace to cross the 1,000 yards mark receiving this season as well as 60 receptions again for his career.
The defense once again looked excellent. They never gave up a TD and were all over the Bills mostly the whole game. Texans DE and NFL sack leader JJ Watt once again added to his total and now sits at 10.5 for the season. Watt, a newly voted team captain was all over the field on Sunday. Wade Phillips was moving him around trying to find a mismatch at every spot on the Bills offensive line. This allowed others to come free to the QB during the game as well. Both OLB’s Connor Barwin and Whitney Mercilus notched sacks under their belt in this game as well. Barwin was the Houston Texans leading sack man last season with 11.5 and now sits at 2 for this year. While Mercilus was the Texans first round draft pick this season, and with limited time has shown he’s got what it takes. He deflected a pass from Joe Flacco last week that was intercepted last week, and sacked Ryan Fitzpartick this week and forced a fumble that for some reason he’s not credited with on the stat lines. Mercilus is looking to make an impact late in this season to increase his reps for the playoff push by these Houston Texans.