There wasn’t a more jawdropping set of numbers than this: Tennessee Titans, 14. Houston Texans 57. Yes, 57. The Texans just dropped a Heinz bottle on the Titans. 57 points.
Take away a pick-six and the Texans offense had 50 points against one of the nastiest, most physical defenses in the league. Deshaun Watson had five touchdowns, four through the air and one on the ground. Five touchdowns tied the NFL rookie touchdown record. He also threw for 283 yards. And he did it all in the first home start of his career.
All of which inspires the question: WHO THE HELL IS TOM SAVAGE?
And how the hell did that guy ever get the start ahead of Deshaun Watson back in Week 1?
Based on what we’ve seen from Watson in the last two weeks, Tom Savage must’ve been Tom Brady to keep Watson on the bench at the start of the season. My man Savage must’ve been just carving up the Texans defense in camp, because Watson is doing that to actual defenses in the regular season.
It’s clear that this is not the same Deshaun Watson who was playing in camp.
Don’t take it from me. Ask wideout DeAndre Hopkins: “He’s maturing more and more every day, not just on the field, but off the field. He’s doing things that [are] characteristics of a quarterback that wants to win everything, the ultimate goal. The way he carries himself — not just on the field, but off the field — the leadership mentality he has. Just the adjustments he can make on the field, going on the sideline, going out and correcting it. I haven’t had that in a while.”
You haven’t had that in a while and nobody’s seen that kind of improvement in a while. I mean if this guy really wasn’t good enough to beat out TOM FREAKING SAVAGE in camp and now he’s lighting up the Titans weeks later, he’s improving at lightning speed.
I would say that this is the same Texans team that got humiliated by the Jags in Week 1, but they aren’t. It’s most of the same players and it’s the same season, but this is not the same team. Watson has changed not only the production, but the mindset of this group.
As Hopkins points out, “The way we practice, the way we go about things every day — not just on the field, but off the field — our mindset is we’re going to score every time we touch the ball or it’s a disappointment.” The team that couldn’t get out of its way against Jacksonville is disappointed when they don’t score now.
This was a team that was built to win with its defense, now its defense can’t even get on the field. Jadeveon Clowney didn’t even know what to do with himself: “We usually play in a lot of snaps on defense, but this game we didn’t get to play too many snaps. I think I was on the sidelines like hollering at the coach one time like, ‘Man, I’m not on the field enough.’ He was like, ‘Nobody’s on the field right now.’”
J.J. Watt was equally confused: “It makes life a lot easier. It’s a beautiful thing to watch. It’s nice to be able to sit back on the bench and just watch the offense move the ball down the field. I’m very excited to obviously be able to put up a performance like that. If they want to score 57 every week, that’s fine by me. I’ll take it.”
The Texans had the ball for nearly 40 minutes yesterday and that was against a smashmouth, ball-control team. Of course the game got out of control early and the Titans lost Marcus Mariota, but this wasn’t supposed to happen. You aren’t supposed to score nearly 60 on the Titans, or have the ball for 40 minutes against them, and you definitely aren’t supposed to do that with a rookie quarterback making his first home start. But the Texans did that and Deshaun Watson did that. And if they can do that, what can’t they do?