It’s finally here! We’ve been counting down the days to today since Daniel Manning’s non-return TD against the Patriots in the AFC semifinals. Maybe at that time some of us thought we’d have a chance, but after not converting for 7 on that opening short drive, I started to think things didn’t look too good. Anyway, enough of the past. Let’s take a look at what to watch for in tonight’s Texans – Chargers game.
- The Running Backs – One of the biggest stories for the Texans this offseason has been about the workload of Arian Foster. Foster didn’t take a single snap in the preseason but is ready to play in tonight’s opener. Kubiak is known to hand the rock to the running backs more often than not, and it’ll be interesting to see if the Texans give Foster more than 20 carries tonight. Ben Tate will likely touch the ball 10+times especially if the game gets out of hand in the second half.
- Safety First - I should probably avoid those “clever” titles but I can’t help myself. Though Ed Reed is officially a game-time decision, I do not expect to see Reed suit up tonight. If Reed doesn’t go, it’ll be everyone’s favorite
safetyspecial-teamer, Shiloh Keo, starting opposite Daniel Manning. D.J. Swearinger will likely see his fair share of playing time as well if Reed sits. Expect the Chargers to exploit the Texans secondary if Keo starts tonight’s game.
- 56 Million Dollar Man - It wasn’t exactly $56 million (just above $55 million), but number 56, Brian Cushing, will likely be getting a lot of ESPN coverage tonight. Cushing is the leader of the defense and coming off a torn ACL in week 5 of last season (also a MNF affair). Cushing is close to %100 and will be tested with Ryan Matthews and Antonio Gates. It’ll likely take a few games for Cushing to get %100 percent, so it’ll be interesting to see how effective he is tonight.
- Jared Crick To Start - With Antonio Smith suspended for swinging at
Cortland FinneganRichie Incognito, Jared Crick will draw the start opposite J.J. Watt. The 2012 4th rounder, Crick played well this preseason and the coaches are rewarding him with the “spot” start.
Later today I’ll be posting a longer preview and give my predictions for tonight’s game in San Diego.
Do you think Ed Reed should play tonight?