Houston Texans: Why Texans Could Be Dark Horse Super Bowl Contender
Arian Foster and Matt Schaub could legitimately lead the Houston Texans to it's first ever Super Bowl this season.
The Texans have started off this season 5-3 and they've looked like an amazing football team at some points during the season.
They currently top their division, and they're winning football games that the Texans of last year would have lost.
The skies are sunny in Houston right now. The Texans have won two in a row, and at the moment they seem unstoppable.
So let's get on with it.
What Makes Up a Super Bowl Contender
Anyone who knows anything about football knows that it is not easy to win a Super Bowl. A lot has to happen for any team to bring home the Lombardi Trophy.
The first thing a Super Bowl caliber team needs is a balanced offense. No team can win a championship with just one facet of an offense.
The second thing a Super Bowl caliber team needs is a balanced defense. To me, this is more valuable than a balanced offense.
A balanced defense can effectively stop the running and passing games of their opponents. The more effective a team's defense is, the more that team's offense will be on the field.
The third thing a Super Bowl caliber team needs is a bit of luck. No team can win the Super Bowl without one lucky break. It can be big or small, but every team needs just a bit of luck.
The Texans' Running Game
The Houston Texans' boast the NFL's fourth best running game. Arian Foster and Co. have averaged 141.9 yards on the ground in the Texans' first eight games.
What's even more impressive about the Houston running game however, is the fact that it has two running backs that can carry the load.
Arian Foster is one of the best rushers in the league. He has averaged 88.7 yards per game this season. But he was out injured for two, kind of three, of the Texans first three games.
During this time the Texans had Ben Tate come in as their first choice running back.
Ben Tate was fantastic in those first three weeks, and he's been equally as impressive since then.
Over the course of the season Tate has averaged 72.6 rushing yards per contest. This gives the Texans two running backs that average over 70 yards per game.
That kind of rushing game is invaluable to a team with Super Bowl aspirations, and there aren't many other teams that can claim an impressive duo like that.
The Texans Passing Game
Matt Schaub has done a good job of keeping the Houston Texans on track in the absence of star wide receiver Andre Johnson.
Throughout the course of the season the Texans have averaged 253.4 yards per game through the air. This ranks them at 11th in the NFL.
However, it is important to remember that Houston has been without the services of receiver Andre Johnson in their last four games.
In that time, Schaub has managed to include Kevin Walter, Jacoby Jones and tight ends Owen Daniels and Joel Dreesen in the Houston passing game.
The most valuable players since Johnson's injury has undoubtedly been Joel Dreesen.
In the time that Johnson has been out the tight end has scored three touchdowns, and he's given Matt Schaub another option in the passing game.
Once Andre Johnson comes back, the Texans will have an offense that is capable of winning the Super Bowl.
The Texans' Defense
The Houston Texans' defense was dealt a huge blow in Week 5 when Mario Williams sustained an injury that ruled him out of the season.
But the defense has bounced back, and in their last two games they've allowed just 21 points.
Throughout the course of the season the Houston defense has demonstrated effectiveness against the passing game and running game.
The Texans allow just 97.4 yards per game to their opponents on the ground, which is the sixth best average in the NFL.
The Texans also boast the NFL's fifth best passing defense, allowing just 189.4 yards in the air to their opponents.
The ability of a defense to be effective on the ground and in the air is something that will give the Texans a huge upper leg on a lot of teams in the league. It may very well help them win the Super Bowl one day.
Can They Do It?
At the end of the day, I do not think that the Houston Texans are going to win the Super Bowl. I believe that the team is talented enough to do so.
They have an extremely talented and balanced squad. Their offense is as good as their defense and vise versa.
Having said that, there is still one position in which the Houston Texans are extremely weak: coaching.
Gary Kubiak is not a coach that can win a Super Bowl. He just doesn't have the ability.
He loses games that other coaches would win. He blows leads, and I think that this will prevent him from bringing home a trophy.
If the Texans truly want to win a Super Bowl, then they will need to bring in a better coach. Until they do that, then I'm afraid the Texans will remain a trophy-less team.