With running back Arian Foster out after groin surgery and Brian Hoyer starting at quarterback, the Texans’ likeliest path to success early this season probably isn’t going to be using offensive firepower to outscore their opponents in shootouts.
That means relying heavily on their defense, which doesn’t look like a bad thing. They have J.J. Watt, of course, and hope that Jadeveon Clowney will be healthy enough to make an impact alongside Brian Cushing and Whitney Mercilus at linebacker. They also signed defensive tackle Vince Wilfork, who agrees that things look good for the Texans while cautioning that looks have proved deceiving in the past.
“Well, I mean on paper, we’re pretty stacked, but I’ve been around some teams where we were pretty stacked on paper and really couldn’t get it done,” Wilfork said, via the Houston Chronicle. “I think the biggest thing for us is each day to get better, to put all the pieces together, to compete at a high level, just trust one another, play with good fundamentals. That’s what training camp is all about. It’s kind of getting the fundamentals of stuff down, getting the base packages done, getting good at technique, just little things, then the little things add up to big things. As long as we do that, and as long as we attack each day to win, that’s the key, attack each day to win, I don’t care what situation he puts us in in practice, we have to be able to win that day. As long as we do that, I think we’ll be OK, I definitely do.”
If the Texans can live up to their paper billing on defense and Hoyer keeps mistakes to a minimum, the Texans should be able to keep themselves in a good position before Foster’s return gives them a full hand to play with on offense. That combination was enough to get Houston nine wins last season and more of the same could be enough for a playoff spot this time around.