Although the Houston Texans season ended with a crushing 34-16 AFC Divisional round loss to the New England Patriots, linebacker Benardrick McKinney saw some positives to his team’s season. McKinney joined The Jim Rome Show live from Super Bowl Radio Row in Houston and talked about the Patriots loss and how they attained some team goals in it.
“We hate that we lost that game or whatever, but we wanted to be the number one defense of the year and we did that,” McKinney said. “We played together as a defense; we flew around, had a lot of fun, played with a lot of juice, and just tried to punish a lot of guys.”
The Texans defense played all but three games without three-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year J.J. Watt. McKinney talked about what it will be like in 2017 when Watt returns from his back injury.
“Sky’s the limit,” McKinney gushed. “J.J., he’s an unbelievable guy, he works hard every day. It’s unbelievable to see him work. When he’s back, he’s going to bring some more juice to the team.”
The Texans’ prized free agent quarterback signing, Brock Osweiler, didn’t seem to live up to his large contract, according to many around the league. McKinney, however, does not agree.
“I love Brock, he’s a great leader,” McKinney said. “I see him coming in the locker room, he’s greeting everybody, he’s speaking to everybody, he’s a great guy to be around. I think he’s a great quarterback.”
When asked point blank if the entire team is still behind Osweiler, McKinney didn’t hesitate. “Yeah,” he said.
As for what advice he would give to the Atlanta Falcons’ defense on the best way to approach New England’s offense and Tom Brady, McKinney said there are a few things they can do that might slow them down.
“You got to stop the run,” McKinney said. “Doing a lot of disguising. Just moving [Brady] around. Man, playing with energy, you got to play with a lot of energy in this game. But like I said, just doing a lot of disguising, pass rush will get to [Brady], try to frustrate him.”