Houston Texans have a chance to avenge sports history against Bills

Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson in huddle (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson in huddle (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

The Houston Texans’ first-round opponent will be the Buffalo Bills, who famously pulled off the greatest comeback in history. It’s time for revenge. How?

As the AFC South champions for only the sixth time in franchise history, the Houston Texans will have their opportunity to participate in the playoffs in hopes of achieving an AFC title game appearance and beyond. But first, the Houston Texans could potentially face a foe that has haunted Houston in the past.

Houston Texans fans, it wasn’t pretty. But the first facet of our ultimate goal has been achieved. It seemed like earlier in the year with the retirement of Andrew Luck that the division belonged to the Houston Texans. After all, we had a roster that looked to improve despite losing Jadeveon Clowney and more. We thought for sure the Houston Texans would make it a 10-win season and another division title with hopes of a first-round bye.

But alas, inconsistency was the main theme for the season. The Houston Texans, as they unintentionally do, made it difficult on themselves while allowing division foes Indianapolis and Tennessee to grab the lead. Then, we had injuries to key players Will Fuller and J.J. Watt, either of which might return come playoff time. Still, thanks to the resiliency of this team, which perhaps gives us more stressful moments than taking an exam after only one day of studying, the Houston Texans are back in the playoffs.

While it would’ve been nice to have taken at least a week off for rest from Wild Card Weekend, the Houston Texans are hosting once again. Hopefully, this time, Watson and the Houston Texans will show up. And with Watt’s potential return, the Houston Texans should be fired up as will the city of Houston.

Something else that might be motivation for Houston is who we’re playing against. The Texans will be hosting the Buffalo Bills. In case you’re either new to the subject of the heartbreak of Houston sports, allow me to explain why this is big. If social media were around back in 1992, the Falcons up 28-3 on New England in the Super Bowl would pale in comparison to 35-3, if that said match were called into the equation.

That was the score the Houston Oilers were up with 13:19 to go in the third quarter following a Bubba McDowell Pick-6. What happened next was something so horrific that I won’t go into it. But like the Falcons, the Oilers lost in overtime.

Needless to say, the Oilers would get some revenge on the Bills years later. Except that by then, the Oilers were now the Tennessee Titans when they pulled off the Music City Miracle. So why does something not part of Texans history matter to us? It matters to Houston fans because we suffered from it.

This would mark the first time Houston has met the Bills in a playoff scenario and once again, it’s in a Wild Card game. This time, Houston hosts the game. Maybe that would work to our advantage.

To be honest, this is a matchup I would like to see. You have a Bills team that has really emerged as a strong contender and they almost derailed the New England Patriots in their last game. They have a strong defense that is second in allowing points per game and third in yards per game. But the Texans‘ offense has put up better numbers than the Bills in terms of scoring (23.6 points per game vs.19.6) and yards per game (362.0 vs. 330.2).

So something has to give.

For the Texans to beat the Bills, the health of Fuller and Kenny Stills will be key. We know how effective the Texans are with Fuller and Stills on the field along with DeAndre Hopkins. Right now, Fuller is dealing with a groin injury, but according to Bill O’Brien, there is a slight possibility that he suits up. If that’s the case, a not-so-100 percent Fuller might be enough for a win just like a not-so-100 percent Watt.

I don’t know why and I’m not going to make some bold predictions about our playoff chances. But there’s something about this Texans‘ team that is making me think this isn’t like in recent years. Sure, O’Brien has talked about consistency in the Texans winning four of five AFC South division titles. Yet, we’re tired of division titles and at some point, we’re going to break through and reach the AFC title game and beyond.

But like I said, this Texans‘ team is different than last year or in year’s past. No way does a Texans‘ team lose on just a field goal to the New Orleans Saints, win road games against the Los Angeles Chargers, Kansas City Chiefs and Titans while knocking off the Patriots at home last year. Perhaps there’s maturity within the Texans although Watson has had a few hiccups on interceptions.

Last season saw the Texans win nine straight games after starting 0-3 while ending up 10-6. Six of those wins were one-score games and two of those six were decided in overtime. Our schedule last season was 30th out of 32 teams.

We entered 2019 with the 5th strongest schedule, which included division winners in the Patriots, Chiefs, Baltimore Ravens, and Saints. Aside from the Ravens, we did a tremendous job of competing with the other three teams. So we’ve made some statements and knocked down some hurdles.

Perhaps, nine times out of 10, I’m probably wrong when I say this, this postseason might be a

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change in our franchise’s fortune. We might have suffered some inconsistency along the way, but when has a Houston championship run been consistent? Ultimately, the Texans would like to win two games in the playoffs. If they get by the Bills, we’re going to have to stop a Ravens’ team that I’m sure Hall of Famer Ray Lewis would like to suit up for. Win there, and we’re on the doorstep to greatness.

But right now, Houston will need to put an end to the Bills. At least they’re not facing Frank Reich, who was the backup quarterback that started the game for Jim Kelly or Kenneth Davis, who took over for Thurman Thomas. At least Don Beebe isn’t going to run out of bounds and make a catch, which should’ve been called illegal.

Next. Texans prematurely pulled trigger on Fuller's $10.2M option. dark

Hypothetically, if the Texans were to get up 35-3 with 13:19 to go in the third quarter, don’t make plans for tickets to the second round yet. Keep scoring. But let’s just hope the Texans come out and play well in front of our home crowd.