“Texans’ offense lacking in big plays” the headline proclaims.
Warning. No spin zone ahead.
The Texans have 8 passing plays over 40 yards this season. That’s the same number as New England and Washington and one more than Denver, Green Bay and the 49ers.
The fact is that the Texans are smack dab in the middle of the league in passing plays over 40 yards. Twelve teams have more and fifteen have fewer.
Seems about normal for a team that prides itself on running the ball and controlling clock.
The columnist goes on to say that the Texans’ 42 completions of 20+ yards are second to last among the AFC’s six playoff teams, besting only Cincinnati’s 38.
True, but they also threw the ball less than any of the AFC playoff teams other than Cincinnati. Makes sense, right?
Take New England for example. They have 52 passing plays of 20+ in 605 attempts. That means 1 out of every 11.6 Tom Brady passes goes for 20+.
Compare that to the Texans who have 42 passing plays of 20+ in 518 attempts. That means 1 out of every 12.3 Matt Schaub passes goes for 20+.
Could the Texans number be better? Sure. Would it be nice to see Schaub look for someone other than #80 past 10 yards? Sure. But is it something that’s keeping them from winning games? It would be easier to build that case if they weren’t 12-3.
Baltimore leads AFC playoff teams in that category, by the way, with 60 of 527 pass attempts going for 20+. That means 1 out of every 8.78 Joe Flacco passes goes for 20+. Surprised? Yeah, me too.
Of the twelve teams that have more 40+ yard passing plays than the Texans, five have no shot at the playoffs (Buccaneers, Saints, Panthers, Lions and Raiders). So it’s not as if being in the top ten in the league in 40+ yard passing plays automatically punches your ticket to the playoffs.
As far as rushing plays over 20 yards, the loose equivalent of passing plays over 40, there are only three teams ahead of the Texans (Minnesota, Buffalo, and San Francisco) and all, including the Texans are near the top of the league in rushing as you would expect.
Yeah, that’s some big play struggling all right.
Moral of the story?
Don’t believe headlines.
Don’t let a columnist think for you.
Do your own fact checking.
Don’t get sucked into the foolishness that is chron.com commenter guy or radio talk show caller guy.
Read all the quotes on houstontexans.com to avoid the spin and selective filters.
It appears that the writer in this case may be pandering to the “throw it downfield” crowd. Because that’s what everyone wants right? Gotta air it out more, right?
There’s just that minor detail that Matt Schaub is the quarterback and if the player isn’t wearing #80, he’s not going to get many looks downfield. That’s the way they play, like it or not. But it’s not as if the Texans are lagging behind the contenders much less the league in big plays.
“You’ve got to be smart,” Coach Kubiak said Thursday after practice. “If you go out there and all you’re doing is trying to make home runs, maybe you’ll make some of them, but you might make a lot of negative plays, too. I know one thing, this place we’re going this weekend, we’re not going to sit back there and throw it 50 times. Something bad is going to happen.”
And even though the suckage level has been off scale high lately and fan optimism is dwindling quickly, they’re still somehow 12-3 with a shot at homefield advantage throughout the playoffs. If you would have told me that at the start of the season, I wouldn’t have believed you.
That said, I’m really not into letter jackets, Cody Claus and Segways. I’d like to see this team win a big game for once. And that doesn’t mean going on the road and beating a terrible Tennessee team, Gary. I’m talking about winning one on the road to secure home field advantage throughout. Do that and you’ll have my attention again. For at least a couple more weeks.