Texans-Steelers: At Least Mario Williams Looked Good

Lots of you get on me about my negativity when it comes to the Texans. So I’m doing something just a bit different to start things off. I’m going to say something positive.

I think now’s the time that I officially apologize to Mario Williams. I’ve always thought he was an awful pick. And I didn’t even buy into him last season. But after Sunday’s debacle against the Steelers, I’ve got to take my hat off to Williams. He was the only guy on the defensive end of the ball who bothered to show up – hell, DeMeco Ryans, who I do like, was pushed around on blocks by wide receiver Hines Ward. He had no help from the rest of the defensive line, yet was still getting to Ben Roethlisberger and he was still making tackles.

So, Mario. I’m sorry.

Oh, one more positive: Ahman Green made it through a game without injury; though it is kind of interesting that rookie Steve Slaton got most of the playing time.

But enough of that because, DAMN, the Steelers put a can of whip-ass on the Texans, dominating the game and winning 38-17. And the game was nowhere near as close as that final score indicates. Matt Schaub looked awful at quarterback, but then again, seeing as how the offensive line failed to block the Steelers for most of the game, it would have been kind of hard for him to look good. And all of you who thought that the problem was just David Carr, you really ought to be rethinking that now. But at least Steve Slaton and Andre Johnson looked good.

The defense was an embarrassment. Steelers’ running back Willie Parker had two rushing touchdowns for all of last season. He had three Sunday, including two in the first half. The Steelers offensive line just pushed the Texans defensive line around. And the secondary looked as bad as it ever has; then again, when the quarterback has all day to pick out a receiver, then the secondary is going to get beat. And the Steelers were so in command that Roethlisberger didn’t even bother to play the fourth quarter.

The Texans will take on the Baltimore Ravens next. The Ravens aren’t known as an offensive powerhouse. But I’ve seen nothing to indicate that the Texans defense can stop anybody. And though the Ravens' defense isn’t as good as it once was – and is nowhere near as good as Pittsburgh’s – I still suspect that they’re not going to have any problem getting to Schaub.

SOME MISCELLANEOUS GAME NOTES:

I’m not the biggest fan of the Chron’s John McClain. I find him to be a bit too much of a cheerleader, and too little of an objective observer. So it was interesting to me that, when I checked his live blog at 11:40 on Sunday morning, he had this to say: “I don’t think the Texans have a prayer of beating the Steelers….I think Pittsburgh is just too good to lose.” Then at 12:56 he came out with “It’s clear that the Texans’ offense has no idea what the Steelers’ defense is doing….The Texans are getting outcoached so bad it’s incredible.”

What was really funny were the comments when a bunch of fans started getting on McClain, of all people, for being too negative. There’s negativity, and there are facts. McClain was right on the facts, and for once, he didn’t try to sugarcoat things.

And many of these fans thought that the Texans were losing because of the officials. Yeah, like if the replay review in the first quarter shows that Schaub did get the first down on that try on fourth, then the Texans would go on to kick the Steelers’ ass.

******************* It’s nice to see that Gary Kubiak still hasn’t learned how to use that replay challenge flag as he’s now 0-2 on the season for his replay challenges. He was only 1-8 last season, so maybe he’s trying for the perfect season.

******************* So Texans fan, are you worried about the running game? Do you dislike the idea that the Texans are still depending on Ahman Green to remain healthy? Well, don’t worry, because the Texans seem to have a backup plan. They’re bringing former Texas Longhorn and former Chicago Bear running back Cedric Benson in for a workout this week. At least according to Benson they are.

Now I’ve got to say that I’m not to thrilled by Ahman Green, but I like Steve Slaton and I think the Texans should give him as much of a chance as possible before taking a flyer on Benson. And that said, as long as the offensive line is as bad as it is, I don’t think it’s going to much matter who is playing at running back because they’re not going to be able to do anything.

******************* And since many of you probably sat through that ugly exhibition of football yesterday, I thought I would give you a nice vision to look at it, so, here’s our Texans’ cheerleader of the week, Erica, a three-year veteran of the squad who just happens to be a school teacher (how come none of my teachers in school ever looked like Erica?).

And if anybody out there wants to vent, I’m here for you. So feel free to leave a comment. -- John Royal


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