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Green Bay Packers vs. Houston Texans: Complete Game Grades and Player Analysis

Matt GoldsteinContributor IIDecember 1, 2016

Green Bay Packers vs. Houston Texans: Complete Game Grades and Player Analysis

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    What an awful, awful game for the Houston Texans.

    The Texans were defeated by the Green Bay Packers 42-24 after a completely dismal performance, and this is a game that the Texans must forget. Soon.

    The Texans have the Baltimore Ravens looming on their schedule, and they must find some way to bounce back form such a devastating loss.

    Complete game grades are now available for all significant Texans' players, so make sure to check them out.


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    Matt Schaub: B+

    Matt Schaub did his best to manage an almost unwinnable game. The Texans could not run the ball, and without success from that department, the play-action pass is completely ineffective. Schaub performed well despite not being able to utilize the play-action, which is his strength as a quarterback.

Running Backs

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    Arian Foster: C-

    Arian Foster’s performance was absolutely miserable tonight. His longest run went for five yards, and he was unable to find the cutback lanes when they did actually appear. His poor game could certainly be attributed to the struggles of his offensive line, but Foster must shoulder some of the blame.


    Ben Tate: Inc.

    Ben Tate must have still been bothered by his nagging toe injury because he hardly played at all this game. He showed up early in the first quarter, and then never appeared again. That was a certainly a shame, especially considering how poor Foster’s performance was.


    James Casey: F

    James Casey looked awful in all faculties of his game tonight. He failed to make any impact in the passing game as he is normally expected to, as he is normally a dependable target for Matt Schaub.

    Casey was miserable as the lead blocker for Arian Foster, and I think the Texans should start giving Tyler Clutts more opportunities to prove himself as a capable lead blocker.

    Casey also failed to pick up the blitzing A.J. Hawk on a play-action pass, which resulted in a momentum killing sack in the third quarter.

Wide Receivers

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    Andre Johnson: B+

    Though Andre Johnson was unable to break out any big plays for the offense, he was able to consistently get open. His eight receptions for 75 yards allowed him to become the first Texan to every reach 10,000 yards receiving. Johnson had the bounce back game that he needed to have after a dismal performance in New York, and it is a shame that his efforts could not result in a Texans’ victory.

    Kevin Walter: B

    Kevin Walter performed the way Kevin Walter is expected to perform this game. He blocked his assignments effectively, though it clearly did not help the Texans’ running efforts. He hauled in two passes for 27 yards, but he also forced a pass-interference penalty in the second quarter that set up the Texans’ first touchdown of the game.

    Keyshawn Martin: B+

    Keyshawn Martin may finally be emerging as the Texans full time slot receiver. Martin showed quickness off the line of scrimmage, and he ran nice, tight crisp routes whenever he was in the game. He had two big catches for the Texans in Packers territory, and he singlehandedly set up Arian Foster’s second touchdown of the game.

Tight Ends

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    Owen Daniels: B

    Though Owen Daniels did not haul in a touchdown pass for the first time in several weeks, he turned in another good performance. He got open for Matt Schaub, and he was the dependable target that he was proven to be all season long.

    Garrett Graham: D-

    Garrett Graham’s entire total of 25 yards came in garbage time, and he made absolutely no impact at all on the game. 

Offensive Line

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    Duane Brown: D+

    Duane Brown did not look like the dominant left tackle that he has become in recent years in tonight’s game. Clay Matthews consistently brutalized him as both a pass rusher and a run stopper.


    Wade Smith: C-

    Wade Smith was not able to open up any holes for Foster throughout the game, and that significantly impacted the Texans’ run game. The left side of the line is supposed to be the better side of the line, and Smith’s terrible performance made the left side look just as weak as the right side.

    Chris Myers: C-

    As the leader of the offensive line, Chris Myers must take some blame for the line’s disgusting performance in this game. Also, considering that B.J. Raji was inactive, Myers should have had a much easier of a time going up against the Packer’s backup nose tackle. He certainly did not, though.

    Antoine Caldwell/Ben Jones: C

    No matter whom the Texans plugged in at right guard, the result was the same: the run blocking was atrocious. The one positive that came out of their performance was that both of Arian Foster’s rushing touchdowns came on runs to the right side.

    Derek Newton: C

    Like is companions on the right side of the line, Derek Newton was unable to open up any holes for the Texans’ star running back. The young starting right tackle must be expected to struggle as he becomes accustomed to his new role in the offense, and tonight was definitely one of those days.

Defensive Line

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    J.J. Watt: A+

    Through all of the disappointment and despair that resulted from this game, one player still brings joy and happiness upon the Houston Texans. Who else but J.J. Watt? Watt managed to get to Aaron Rodgers twice in the game, bring his sack total up to nine-and-a-half sacks, the most in the NFL.

    For the majority of the game, Watt was double, and sometimes even triple, teamed by the Packers, which makes his performance even more impressive.

    Shaun Cody: C

    A starting nose tackle should never just record one tackle. Shaun Cody, like all other nose tackles in the NFL, is supposed to be a major player against the run. Though the Packers did not destroy the Texans on the ground, Cody did not contribute at all to the Texans’ run stopping efforts.

    Antonio Smith: C

    One would think that with all the attention that J.J. Watt and the Texans’ outside linebacker were attracting, that Antonio Smith, the Pro Bowl defensive end, would be able to get to the quarterback. Smith was not able to do that, and his performance was a continuation of mediocre season for the veteran end. 


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    Connor Barwin: B-

    Connor Barwin would have had his best game of the season if it were not for his mind-numbing, idiotic leaping penalty. I wish I could use more expletive words to describe my anger associated with that penalty, but I would probably get fired.

    Barwin, though, managed to somewhat pressure Rodgers during the game, and he forced a holding penalty and swatted down a pass.

    Bradie James: A-

    Bradie James showed tonight that he could somewhat make up for the loss of Brian Cushing. Although James will never be able to match Cushing’s unbelievable athleticism and knack to be everywhere on the field at once, he did prove he could be a solid player tonight.

    James was consistent against the run, and he showed that he could still be a powerful downhill tackler this late in his career.

    Tim Dobbins: F

    If Tim Dobbins did anything at all this game, someone please inform me. I did not hear his name called once, and he did not record a single tackle. An unacceptable performance from a starting inside linebacker.

    Brooks Reed: C+

    Brooks Reed turned in an OK game. He did not garner a sack, but he did manage to hit Aaron Rodgers twice. Hey, that’s something, right? 


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    Johnathan Joseph: F

    If you thought Johnathan Joseph’s performance against the Jets was bad, his performance against the Packers was on a whole ‘nother level. Joseph got beat by Jordy Nelson so many times that it seemed like Nelson was getting covered by a 350-pound nose tackle.

    Joseph’s coverage was ripped apart this game, and his performance was definitely the worst he’s ever had in a Texans’ uniform.

    Kareem Jackson: D

    Though Johnathan Joseph was bad, Kareem Jackson was not much better. Jackson looked like the rookie Jackson from 2010 when he would refuse to rotate his head on deep passes, and he gave up two touchdowns tonight solely for that reason.

    Jackson was also flagged for a pass interference penalty that set up a Packers’ touchdown when he did not turn his head and locate the ball in mid-air.

    Danieal Manning: C-

    Although Danieal Manning should have never committed that personal foul penalty, it was not completely his fault. His knee was locked in a painful position in that pile, and it appeared that he was simply trying to free himself from the awkward position.

    Manning, however, was also very inconsistent in coverage. He gave up a touchdown to Jordy Nelson in the right corner of the end zone, and Aaron Rodgers exploited him all game long.

    Glover Quin: A-

    Glover Quin’s performance was the lone bright spot in the Texans’ secondary’s horrific one. He had a huge defended pass that prevented a Packer’s touchdown, and he played well in coverage for the majority of the game.

    Quin, however, is receiving such a high grade for his performance against the run. The Packers set up their run game to attack Quin and force him to make the correct decisions, and Quin did just that. He finished with eight tackles, the most out of any Texan.

Special Teams

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    Donnie Jones: A

    Donnie Jones has punted excellently for the Texans all season, and he continued that trend tonight. Jones is proving to be a solid free agent pickup, as he is able to continuously pin opponents back in their own territory.

    Shayne Graham: A

    Shayne Graham did not get to do much of anything this game, but he did connect on a 51-yard field goal, which may perhaps erase concerns about his weak leg.

    Keyshawn Martin: A-

    Keyshawn Martin did not appear to struggle with the poor blocking on punt and kick returns that many have claimed to be the reason for Trindon Holliday’s poor performances in previous weeks.

    Martin was able to return the ball effectively for the Texans, and it appears that he will be the Texans’ full-time punt and kick returner for the remainder of the season.


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    Gary Kubiak: C

    The offense simply did not execute this game, and the offense is Gary Kubiak’s responsibility. Kubiak, however, cannot control terrible offensive line play, so the blame should not fall to heavily on him.


    Wade Phillips: D

    Although it was clear that bump and run coverage would allow Rodgers to pick apart the Texans’ secondary from very early on in the game, Wade Phillips refused to abandon it. This game could have had a much different result if Phillips allowed for the Texans to simply fall back in a zone, for the cornerbacks were too off on their game to effectively press the Packers’ talented wide receivers.

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