Brock Osweiler has played some low-quality football since he became a Texan. His performance this season is turning heads, but for all the wrong reasons.
Against the Chargers yesterday, Osweiler threw three ugly interceptions, which contributed to Houston’s demise on their own home turf. After the game, Texans head coach, Bill O’Brien, had to justify not benching him for backup quarterback Tom Savage.
“No,” O’Brien firmly stated when asked about starting Savage in favor of Osweiler. “We’re going to come in here tomorrow, we’re going to correct mistakes, and move on to Green Bay.”
Osweiler has thrown more interceptions than touchdowns this season and his quarterback rating is an embarrassing 72.2, which is making Brian Hoyer’s performance last season look Hall-of-Fame-worthy in comparison.
In Osweiler’s first 11 starts this season, he has completed 59.5 percent of his passes for 2,307 yards, 12 scores, and 13 interceptions. In 2015, Hoyer completed 60.7 of his passes for 2,606 yards for 19 touchdowns and seven interceptions, all while posting a decent 91.4 quarterback rating. Hoyer only played in 11 games with nine starts, so comparing these stats are not only fair, they’re alarming.
With Osweiler under center, the Texans rank 31st in the league in passing yards, averaging 196 a game, proving John Elway was no fool to let Osweiler walk this offseason. Osweiler was a product of Elway’s system, as the Broncos boasted the NFL’s top defense and a stout run game a season ago, which helped shadow their struggles at the league’s most prestige position.
Against his former team in Week 7, Osweiler dropped back to attempt a pass, but the ball miraculously slipped from his hand and sailed forward. The pass was so bad, most players rightfully assumed it was incomplete, even though it was eventually ruled a fumble, one the Broncos would recover, as Denver would go on to thump Houston, 27-9.
Osweiler couldn’t even hit the century mark against the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 10, passing for only 99 yards in the entire game. He has only topped 250 yards passing twice in 11 games.
It’s not like Osweiler doesn’t have help around him. DeAndre Hopkins is a proven playmaker and has carried many of Houston’s previous quarterbacks to victory. Will Fuller and Braxton Miller are both emerging stars, and have potential to be nightmares for opposing defenses if the ball lands in their hands.
Houston’s run game is far superior to what they had in 2015, as Lamar Miller singlehandedly beat the Colts in Week 6, picking up a total of 178 yards with two scores in order to engineer an epic comeback win, 26-23. The Texans are ranked fifth in the NFL in rushing yards, averaging 121 a game.
Even without superstar J.J. Watt for a large chunk of the season, Houston’s defense has held their weight in 2016, only allowing 317 total yards a game, which ranks fourth in the league.
If Osweiler continues to bring the Texans down, Houston will struggle to finish .500 and may not be able to win the dreadful AFC South. The Colts and Titans aren’t powerhouses by any means, but they won’t need to be. At least they, unlike the Texans, have viable options at quarterback.