Browns vs. Texans: 5 Things We Learned from Houston's 30-12 Win
Another week, another victory for the Houston Texans over a team they are clearly better than.
With this victory, Houston improves to 6-3 for the first time in team history and they maintain their lead atop the AFC South.
It's hard to find much to complain about with this team, but we do continue to learn new things about them every single week. Let us take a look at a few of those now.
Brooks Reed Is for Real
Every week, this guy seems to improve.
Being an early second-rounder that many scouts had graded as first-round talent, anything short of being a starter was unacceptable for Reed. But the team did want to ease him into things slowly and let him learn from Mario Williams. Sometimes, things don't go as planned but can still be a pleasant surprise. Reed seems to be that kind of revelation.
With another stellar game today that included two sacks and a monster hit on Colt McCoy, many are thinking this guy may just be the real deal. To me, it's a slam dunk that this guy is going to be a terrific NFL player for a long time.
The exciting thing is to imagine the possibility next season of starting Brooks Reed and Mario Williams with Connor Barwin rotating in and out.
That combined with a Wade Phillips defense has Houston fans drooling in excitement.
For more on Reed, be sure to check out Brooks Reed and the Texans' Biggest Rookie Surprises Ever.
Quintin Demps Has Earned a Permanent Roster Spot
Two weeks ago, Quintin Demps was watching NFL games on Sunday from his living room sofa. Today, he earned a permanent roster spot on this team in my opinion.
With Danieal Manning down, Texans nation was terrified at the thought of rookie Shiloh Keo getting significant snaps in his place. But after his lackluster performance against Tennessee, Houston decided to bring back Demps to fill in.
He was cut in the preseason and when no one else picked him up, it wasn't thought of as a bad decision, but the past two weeks he has made some terrific plays without being a liability in coverage. When Danieal Manning returns to the field, I think Demps will get to stay in place of Shiloh Keo, who will probably find his way back to the Texans' practice squad.
Ben Tate Will Make Arian Foster's Contract Negotiation Messy
Ben Tate is just an animal. I have no other way that I can put it.
When Tate was drafted in the second round last year, he was meant to be the starter for years to come. No one could have predicted the revelation that Arian Foster would be after Tate's ankle injury that stole his rookie season from him.
After another dominating day from both Foster and Tate, it is becoming hard to ignore the elephant in the room about the kind of payday that Arian is in line for. But with how terrific Tate is running the ball, you have to imagine that will be used as leverage in contract negotiations this offseason.
I am in no way saying that Tate is a better player or vice versa. I am simply bringing up the point that only a great fool would believe that Tate's similar stats won't be brought up once Rick Smith starts talking money with Foster's agent.
Brian Cushing Is Voted a Team Captain Unanimously
Twitter lit up like a Christmas tree before kickoff today that Brian Cushing was sporting a new Texans jersey with a "C" on it. Which, as most of you probably know, stands for Captain.
We already knew that Cushing was wearing the helmet with the headset in it now and he has very clearly been leading this defense, so when it was opened up to a vote this week about adding another captain, Cushing was the unanimous vote by his teammates.
It's well earned, as Cush is having an All-Pro type season and is playing with a chip on his shoulder. No player out there gets more criticism, nationally and locally, than Cushing has the past year-plus. When you serve a suspension for performance-enhancing drugs, you're never going to shake that label. Which is fine by Cushing and Texans fans. Because nothing fuels him more than those who don't believe in him.
Brian Cushing is not doing anything less than any other player at his position in football. Sure, he doesn't have the flashy celebration dance or the fancy marketing and commercials like others do, but as long as he keeps doing what he does on the field, that's fine by me.
This Defense Gets Better Every Game
As I stated last week, this defense has exceeded everyone's expectations already this year. Coming into this week, they were ranked third in the NFL in overall defense and that includes a game where they gave up a 40-spot to the Saints.
But after another dominating performance this week, that only allowed a touchdown after a turnover, they just might move up even higher in the rankings.
The defense only allowed 172 yards of total offense today and they continued to turn the ball over with a fumble recovery and an interception that were both turned into points.
I cannot say enough about the job that Wade Phillips has done with these guys. Him, and his coaching staff, have converted a lot of players from last year's awful defense into playmakers. It's amazing what a little coaching can do, huh?
Hopefully, Wade Phillips is on the Texans' sidelines as defensive coordinator for many years to come.