Remember how great the Texans' offense was in 2011 when Matt Schaub was healthy?
It was beautiful. Arian Foster would decimate defenses and then Schaub would pick them apart with the play-action pass.
That didn't happen last season, though, as Foster struggled to consistently pick up big yardage and the play-action game seemed ineffective.
What went wrong? Did Foster accumulate too many carries, forcing his body to wear down and render him ineffective? Was that the reason the play-action game wasn't respected or was it because Schaub just stunk it up, which would allow defenses' to stack the box and stop the running game?
None of the above.
The Texans' offensive line collapsed. It was a long and painful decline from greatness, but it happened, and it destroyed the Texans' offense. Derek Newton and Ben Jones, the starters on the right side of the line, were the catalysts.
They could not keep pass-rushers in front of them nor open holes in the running game. In turn, the offense—and the Texans as a whole—stopped succeeding.
But there is hope. Brandon Brooks has emerged as the Texans' starting right guard and his physicality will be much welcomed. In addition, Patrick Starr of Stateofthetexans.com, reports that Brooks has impressed so far during training camp.
Derek Newton has also shown big strides from last season as well, said Starr.
There is no guarantee, but training camp so far has shown that the Texans' right side of the offensive line is much improved.
If early observations are correct, then it is quite possible that the brutally efficient Texans' offense of 2011 will be making a return in 2013.