The scoreboard may say the Patriots were better than the Texans this season, but Houston cornerback Johnathan Joseph doesn’t see it that way.
Joseph told CSNHouston.com that he still believes that the Texans are better than the Patriots, regardless of the Patriots beating the Texans 42-14 in December and 41-28 in January.
“Obviously we had the right guys in here to win 13 ballgames to get up to that point,” Joseph said. “For whatever reason, we didn’t advance. I still can’t put that over because I think we were a better team. I think we just didn’t make the plays at the right time.”
Asked if the combined 83-42 score of the two Patriots-Texans game indicates that the Patriots are significantly better than the Texans, Joseph said he doesn’t view it that way.
“Not at all,” Joseph said. “Just four or five plays. You take a few of those plays that they made and go the other way, it’s a different ballgame.”
When Joseph says “Just four or five plays” needed to “go the other way,” he is technically correct. When the Patriots beat the Texans 42-14, Tom Brady threw four touchdown passes. If on those four plays the Texans had instead intercepted Brady’s passes and returned them for touchdowns, and if the rest of the game had been unchanged other than those four plays, then instead of the Patriots winning 42-14 it would have been the Texans winning 42-14.
But while technically correct, that way of thinking is also utterly ridiculous. If you want to look at it that way, you could say that every game in NFL history would have been different if you reversed four or five plays.
Well, every game in NFL history except for one: In the 1940 NFL Championship Game, the Bears beat the Redskins 73-0. That’s the only game in NFL history that had a margin of victory of more than 10 touchdowns, which means it’s the only game in NFL history in which you could say that even if you reverse five touchdowns from one team and turn them into five touchdowns for the other team, it wouldn’t have changed which team won.
That game, incidentally, featured Redskins Hall of Fame quarterback Sammy Baugh throwing what appeared to be a sure touchdown pass into the hands of receiver Charlie Malone on Washington’s opening drive — only to have Malone drop it. After the game Baugh was asked if the result would have been different if Malone had caught that pass, and Baugh answered, “Yeah. It would have made it 73-7.”
Johnathan Joseph would be wise to take a cue from Sammy Baugh and accept that the Patriots are better than the Texans.