SportsFan // Outlet Shop


(800) 767-5849

  • RSS Feed
Posts tagged with "Texans"

Sometimes 2-2 is a reason to celebrate (see: Jets, New York), other times it’s a potential disaster.

The Patriots fell to .500 on Sunday, falling 33-30 on a last-second field goal against a Panthers team that had scored 45 points combined in their first three games.

“Disappointed, 2-2 is just a record, but just in terms of how we played and what we need to do in order to play better and win,” Patriots quarterback Tom Brady said on WEEI on Monday morning.

“Hopefully, we can figure out a way to play consistently over an entire game.”

The Patriots just as easily could be 1-3, with Texans safety Corey Moore dropping an interception that would have sealed a Houston Week 3 victory, instead turning into a 36-33 Pats win thanks to some Brady magic.

We’ve been here before. We’ve buried the Patriots before.

In 2014, after getting pummeled 41-14 by the Chiefs on Monday night with Brady playing dreadful, the New England dynasty was declared dead. Brady was washed up. Bill Belichick had lost his magic touch.

That season ended with a Super Bowl.

Read more…

The Patriots have been battling with injuries they didn’t have to face in 2016.

Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

1. In 2016, the Patriots finished the season with just three players on the injured reserve: LB Jonathan Freeny (shoulders), TE Rob Gronkowski (back), and TE Greg Scruggs (knee). Two other players were on the PUP list and did not play all season: OG Tre Jackson (knee) and OT Sebastian Vollmer (everything).

This year, the Patriots are in much worse shape. WR Julian Edelman (ACL), CB Cyrus Jones(ACL), EDGE Derek Rivers (ACL), EDGE Caleb Kidder, and TE Matt Lengel were all placed on the injured reserve prior to the start of the season and cannot return this year, while EDGE Shea McClellin, WR Malcolm Mitchell, and DT Vincent Valentine were placed on the injured reserve after week 1 and are eligible to return.

This does not include the non-football injury players in EDGE Keionta Davis, OG Chase Farris, OT Antonio Garcia, and OT Andrew Jelks.

The Patriots are able to bring two players back from the injured reserve this year, so two of McClellin, Mitchell, and Valentine will return based upon team need. My guess would be on the first two.

2. As MassLive’s Kevin Duffy highlighted, the Patriots have made eight draft selections in the first four rounds of the past two drafts. Just two remain on the Patriots active roster in 2016 third round OG Joe Thuney and 2017 EDGE Deatrich Wise.

2016 2nd round CB Cyrus Jones is out for the year with a torn ACL, 2016 third round QB Jacoby Brissett is now with the Indianapolis Colts, and 2016 third round DT Vincent Valentine and 2016 fourth round WR Malcolm Mitchell are on the injured reserve with knee injuries. 2017 third round EDGE Derek Rivers tore his ACL in camp, while 2017 third round OT Tony Garcia wasn’t able to participate due to his limitations.

The Patriots really need to figure out what went wrong with all of these injuries and if they can fix the problem moving forward. It’s hard to blame all of this on the turf.

3. The Herald’s Jeff Howe did a nice job highlighting why Rob Gronkowski wants to play so badly against the Texans. The Patriots and Gronkowski added new incentives into the tight end’s contract and he’s not on pace to reach the highest level at this point in time- and missing any more time could cost him the second-tier of incentives.

Gronkowski has the opportunity to produce in the Patriots offense and it would be fantastic if he could provide the same offense every week that he did against the New Orleans Saints, but he can’t do that from the sideline.

4. RB Dion Lewis and RB James White join Gronkowski as offensive players with playing time incentives, while LB Dont’a Hightower, DT Lawrence Guy, DT Alan Branch, SS Patrick Chung, FS Duron Harmon, and LB David Harris all have playing time incentives on defense. The Patriots aren’t the type of team to sit players for the sake of reducing their annual earnings, but that’s certainly something that the players are thinking about.

Lewis, Branch, and Harris are three players that aren’t seeing the necessary playing time to come close to their incentives because there are better (and younger and cheaper) alternatives on the roster. Hopefully Branch can find his 2015-16 form and regain his role, but Lewis and Harris are unlikely to see the needed time without more injuries.

The other players are on the bubble of reaching their incentives and need to keep playing at a high level to achieve them.

5. The Patriots have intentionally brought players back from injury at a slower rate than their competitors because they would rather them be as close to 100% as possible. New England is able to do that because the Patriots have done such a strong job of building the depth of the roster- and part of building this depth is giving younger players an opportunity to play early in the regular season, as an extension of sorts for the preseason.

Don’t be surprised if a lot of the players that were listed as limited on the injury report this week are eased back on the field to give younger players an opportunity.

6. I spoke with Kenneth Levy of to see if there were any Texans that the Patriots might be able to acquire in the middle of the season as reinforcements.

Read more…


Houston Texans defensive end JJ Watt and his season ended weeks ago with back surgery, cialis but that hasn’t stopped him from being the JJ Watt the Houston area has come to know and love.

Senior linebacker Grant Milton of Woodlands High School collapsed on the field during a playoff game and was rushed away from McLane Stadium in Waco on Saturday for emergency surgery with a possible brain injury.

“He was sitting on the bench and suddenly started throwing up. It just happened all of a sudden, and nobody saw anything because he wasn’t on the field, and the game just kept going on,” said classmate Bryn Stephens.

Milton’s family gave an update on his health:

“Everyone has been so supportive and we can’t thank you enough for your prayers,” the statement read.

“Grant is still in critical condition and in a coma. His recent CT scan continues to improve. His medications have been reduced today and he showed positive signs of movement and strength in his upper body.His vital signs are strong and anyone who knows Grant would say he is STRONG and SPIRITED. The doctors indicate he is trending in the right direction and that his youthfulness and strength are on his side.”

Read more…


Monday Night Football is taking a trip to Mexico City tonight, where the Oakland Raiders and Houston Texans will do battle at the Estadio Azteca.

It’s going to be quite the change of environment for both teams. Whereas they’re two of only 11 franchises in the NFL that are accustomed to playing in stadiums that are less than 50 feet above sea level, the Estadio Azteca sits at an altitude of 7,280 feet. For perspective on just how monumental that is, the Sports Authority Field at Mile High – home of the Denver Broncos, which is the most elevated stadium in the league by a significant margin – checks in at around 2,000 feet lower.

That’s not the only thing the Raiders and Texans will have to adjust to, though. According to former United States national team soccer star Eric Wynalda, there’s one reason in particular why he believes the Estadio Azteca is the “worst place to ever play a sporting event.”

“You can’t breathe,” Wynalda told USA Today. “The pollution is so bad that if you don’t have some form of rain that’s brought all that down, you are going to be sucking wind. They (will) break a record for how many oxygen masks they have on the sidelines. The combination of being that high up with pollution is just devastating to the body.”

Read more…


HOUSTON (AP) — Benardrick McKinney is often overshadowed on a Houston defense filled with first-round picks.

But this season it’s been hard to ignore the work of the linebacker, who leads the team and is tied for sixth in the NFL with 101 tackles, helping the defense remain the strongest part of the team despite the loss of J.J. Watt.

McKinney is in his second year in Houston after the Texans drafted him from Mississippi State in the second round. He had a solid rookie season, appearing in 14 games with 11 starts and finishing with 63 tackles.

This year he moved into a full-time role as starter and has thrived. He has four games with 10 or more tackles, including a career-high 16 against New England in Week 3. He also has four sacks to be the only player in the NFL this year — and just the third player in franchise history — with at least 100 tackles and four sacks in a season.

“He started last year growing and developing toward the last part of the season,” defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel said. “He understood the defense. He understood how he has to play the game and puts himself in good position. He gets around the ball quite a bit.”

McKinney , who had 12 tackles last week against San Diego, believes his improvement this season is simply a product of him being more comfortable.

“Last year I was too worried about messing up and stuff … it comes easy now,” he said. “When you understand the defense you don’t have to think a lot, just go out there and play.”

That understanding has been helped by his relationship with linebackers coach Mike Vrabel, who had a distinguished 14-year NFL career and won three Super Bowls with the Patriots. McKinney raves about Vrabel and brings him up constantly when asked about his work this season.

“Coach Vrabel does an unbelievable job of just putting me in a great position to make plays,” McKinney said. “I’m just trying to help the defense out, force three-and-outs, get the defense lined up, play my style of football and just try to help us win games.”

Vrabel thinks McKinney’s health this season is another reason for his success after he struggled through a knee injury and a concussion early last year that set him back a bit.

Read more…


Derek Carr certainly made an impression on Jon Gruden in the months leading up to the 2014 NFL Draft.

The then-Fresno State Bulldog was one of the college signal-callers selected to participate in Gruden’s QB Camp, erectile and while his knowledge of the game and obvious athleticism stuck with Gruden during their time together, see Carr also made sure to leave a more lasting memory with the former Raiders head coach and current Monday Night Football analyst.

“You know what, price I can remember him [Carr] throwing the ball like it was yesterday,” said Gruden Wednesday on a conference call with national media heading into the Raiders Week 11 Monday Night Football matchup against the Houston Texans. “We had two cameras set up 19 or 20 yards down the field on each hash mark, and we threw some seam passes into the bullseye where the Go Pro camera was, and most of the guys hit the screen, a couple of guys would hit the target; Derek Carr hit the bullseye both times and broke my cameras.”

Read more…


MEXICO CITY (AP) — As much as possible, the Oakland Raiders and Houston Texans want to treat their trip to Mexico City as business as usual.

But there’s no hiding the fact that this game will be unlike any other road trip.

Players have been given security warnings. The teams are taking precautions about how their food is prepared. And both teams are figuring out how to deal with the thin air 7,380 feet above sea level when the Texans (6-3) take on the Raiders (7-2) on Monday night at Azteca Stadium.

Players have run extra laps, spent more time on the bike, and a few have even used elevation masks as part of their training for the game.

Read more…

Page 1 of 1