2022 NFL Preview: Houston Texans

The 2022 NFL Season is nearly upon us. As part of the run up to the season, we’re preview all the teams, culminating with our picks for who makes the playoffs and who wins the awards this season. Check back each day through September 5. Let’s get ready for some football!

The 2021 Houston Texans looked rough at best. They had a new head coach. They lost J.J. Watt. Deshaun Watson rode the bench all season due to being accused of multiple instances of sexual assault. Lots of moving pieces and none of them were moving in the right direction.

They opened the season with rookie Davis Mills and Tyrod Taylor at the quarterback position. This wasn’t the worst thing that could have happened, but only slightly better than pulling a fan at random to start under center. While Mills set the Texans rookie season record for passing yards, he did so quite unremarkably as it felt like the Texans opened each game in garbage time. For the second straight year, the Texans were the first team eliminated from getting into the playoffs. Not a good look, but somewhat expected after the Bill O’Brien era ended. They had an extra game and still only managed to match their win total of four from 2020.

Off-Season Changes

There was some house cleaning in the off-season. They fired David Culley and their OC Tim Kelly. They traded their creeper quarterback to the Browns. They let Tyrod walk. Lots of moving pieces and it almost looks like they were all in the right direction. Only time will tell.

The most notable thing the Texans did was wait patiently until the trade market was at it’s peak for Watson. They pulled one of the biggest hauls ever in a trade, if not the biggest. Not bad for a quarterback that they coach decisioned on every game and with a potential long suspension pending. As I’ve stated previously, a big part of that is the Browns doing Browns things.

The free agent signings were plentiful if nothing else. Probably nothing else as none of the players even resembled a splash. The draft brought in more talent than all the other signings did. They took LSU cornerback Derek Stingley Jr and guard Kenyon Green with their First Round picks. It looks like they got a stud running back in Dameon Pierce in the Fourth Round. One of their biggest picks, Second Rounder John Metchie III, was expected to boost Mills’ starting receiving corps but was diagnosed with leukemia prior to the preseason starting. It’s sad anytime a player is out for the season, but this isn’t something as simple as an ACL. Hopefully he can beat it and resume his dream of being an NFL player.

Fantasy Prospects

The Texans fantasy impact players are not exciting. Most of them are not playable, with the exception of Brandin Cooks. Cooks is coming off his sixth straight season of over 1,000 yards. Rookie RB Pierce is intriguing, but how much will he be used with his team down 50 points going into halftime every week? Brevin Jordan has a shot at producing at tight end, but he’s more of a dynasty stash than someone who will play for your team. Mills has gotten some pre-season hype as taking a step forward, but I’ll believe it when I see it.

Prediction

The Texans were bad in 2020. They were bad in 2021. They’re going to be bad in 2022. Not really much else to say. I have them finishing with four wins for the third season in a row, and possibly vying for the number one pick in the 2023 draft.

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