Wednesday, 15 August, 2018

Deshaun Watson leads Texans past Bengals in first National Football League start

Deshaun Watson Dak Prescott share state number and now NFL success Deshaun Watson Dak Prescott share state number and now NFL success
Kristopher Love | 17 September, 2017, 06:25

Houston Coach Bill O'Brien hasn't made an official announcement, although the decision to start Watson was expected after first-game starter Tom Savage struggled mightily in the team's 29-7 loss to Jacksonville on Sunday.

Watson scrambled 49 yards for the game's only touchdown Thursday night, leading the injury-depleted Houston Texans to a 13-9 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals.

Texans at Bengals was a game controlled by defense. Houston tries to make it a 2-1 start to their season next week as they visit Tom Brady and the New England Patriots.

It's not the NFL's fault that there aren't a lot of very good quarterbacks out there right now.

Back to Houston: Adding injury to insult, the team had a whopping five players in the concussion protocol, including all three tight ends.

"Zig-zag, zig-zag, zig-zag, tired, tired, tired", Watt said, describing the multi-lateral play.

Here are the studs and duds for Houston from the important win. T.J. Johnson replaced Hopkins in Sunday's game and could make his second career start on Thursday.

The Texans are coming off an emotional loss to the Jaguars last week after playing at home days after Hurricane Harvey ravaged the city. If Deshaun Watson had a better offensive line to protect him and actually give him time in the pocket, he could do some great things. All three times, the Bengals blitzed and got the stop. Watt injured the ring finger on his left hand in Week 1, and it appears to have gotten a bit worse in Week 2, via ESPN's Sarah Barshop. He finished the game 12 of 23 for 102 yards and a touchdown. The Texans will want to keep guys close to Dalton for some high percentage dump offs against the Houston pass rush. On paper, Watson appears to be the logical choice given the porous condition of the Texans offensive line. The game was more of a "which team stinks less" for the vast majority of the night, and the Texans proved they smelled a little better. "The way he was acting like he was open, I don't think he knew he stepped out". He was back in form Thursday with six tackles, one pass deflection and one hit on Dalton.

As bad as Dalton was, he still found A.J. Green five times for 74 yards.

The downside to this early season action is exposing Watson before he is ready to shoulder the responsibility. Linebacker Brian Cushing is serving a 10-game suspension for violating the NFL's policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Heading into next week's game against the New England Patriots, Watson will have to learn from his six National Football League quarters, including the second half last week after he replaced Tom Savage.