By: Angel Rick Leal
Houston Texans vs New England Patriots
Sunday – September 9 – 12:00 p.m.
Gillette Stadium – Foxboro, MA
Could this be one of two meetings between these teams? Sunday and possibly the AFC Championship? These two teams have met each other 10 times including two postseason games with New England winning 9 out of 10 games. Those numbers don’t look promising for the Texans but with almost everyone coming back for Houston and healthy, times might be changing. The Patriots have since lost three of their key receivers including Brandin Cooks, Danny Amendola and Dion Lewis. Of course let’s not forget the two receivers that have given the Texans the blues for the past few years, Chris Hogan and Rob Gronkowski who remains the best tight end in the NFL hands down. Coming out of the backfield are running backs Rex Burkhead and James White who also can add to Brady’s ammunition in the passing game. Patriots QB Tom Brady seems to get better with each year he plays. Brady, who turned 41 just last month feels he could play till he’s 45 years of age.
Last season Houston Texans QB Deshaun Watson went 22 of 33 for 301 yards passing, 2 TDs and 2 INTs as well as rushing for 41 yards on 8 carries against the Patriots but ultimately fell short 36-33. With a season under his belt and healthy, Watson has had time to better prepare for the Patriots defense. Not to mention having the best receiver in the game, DeAndre Hopkins. Pending Kevin Johnson’s ability to clear concussion protocol, the Texans will have every starter available when training camp began. With Romeo Crennel returning as defensive coordinator, Houston’s defense will be stacked with JJ Watt and Whitney Mercilus returning along with Jadeveon Clowney.