Matt Schaub Ear Injury Proves Need for Texans to Make Protecting QB Priority One

Nicholas GossCorrespondent ISeptember 25, 2012

DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 23:  Quarterback Matt Schaub #8 of the Houston Texans looks on against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on September 23, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. The Texans defeated the Broncos 31-25.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub was the victim of a vicious hit by Denver Broncos linebacker Joe Mays during Sunday's game, one that gave him a most unusual injury.

I felt fine. I lost a piece of my ear. Matt Schaub #tough #Texans

—Tania Ganguli (@taniaganguli) September 24, 2012

The hit knocked Schaub out of the game (video below), forcing backup quarterback T.J. Yates to enter the action, but Schaub returned after just one play.

The Texans are 3-0, but should feel very fortunate that their franchise quarterback, and the key to the team winning its first Super Bowl in franchise history, did not suffer a more serious injury.

This incident will surely remind the Texans that protecting their star quarterback must be priority one if this is to be a successful year for Houston.

The Houston offensive line has only allowed three sacks so far this season, but they must limit the amount of plays in which their quarterback is pummeled by opposing players.

We all know Schaub is one of the toughest quarterbacks in the league, but he shouldn't have to show this toughness multiple times each week.

Schaub has dealt with injuries in the past, including last year when a season-ending injury derailed the Texans' promising season.

Schaub has started the season in fine form, throwing for 751 yards with five touchdowns and just a single interception.

The Texans' passing attack, combined with the impressive running of Arian Foster and Ben Tate give Houston the most balanced offense in pro football.

If Schaub were to get hurt, the Texans would go from arguably the top contender in the AFC to reach the Super Bowl, to a team that would be lucky to advance past the Wild Card round of the playoffs in January.

After the hits he took on Sunday, the Texans offense needs to make sure they do a better job of keeping him upright in the pocket.