Kickoff Sunday, Sep 24th 1:00pm Eastern

Texans (
18) at

Jaguars (

Over/Under 43.5


Key Matchups
Texans Run D
2nd DVOA/2nd Yards allowed per carry
Jaguars Run O
26th DVOA/30th Yards per carry
Texans Pass D
23rd DVOA/22nd Yards allowed per pass
Jaguars Pass O
13th DVOA/18th Yards per pass
Jaguars Run D
6th DVOA/9th Yards allowed per carry
Texans Run O
30th DVOA/26th Yards per carry
Jaguars Pass D
12th DVOA/17th Yards allowed per pass
Texans Pass O
12th DVOA/5th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By Hilow >>
  • The Texans have averaged 45.5 pass attempts per game over the first two weeks of the season.
  • Both teams rank in the top 12 in seconds per play (HOU – fifth at 25.5, JAX – 12th at 27.9).
  • Nico Collins and Tank Dell both rank in the top 10 in average separation at target amongst qualified pass-catchers.
  • Zay Jones missed practice Wednesday with a knee injury suffered against the Chiefs.
  • Both offensive lines are legitimate issues for these two teams.

How Houston will try to Win ::

First off, I don’t think we’ve necessarily been shown how the Texans want to try and win games this season just yet. While the team is averaging 45.5 pass attempts per game over the first two weeks of the season, their pass rate over expectation values have ranked in the bottom half of the league in both weeks. On the other hand, their 25.5 seconds per play ranks as the fifth-fastest pace of play thus far. We all thought coming into the season that new head coach DeMeco Ryans would adopt a more conservative game management approach built around the talent on the defense, but we’ve seen a team not afraid to air it out when the opportunity presents itself. Offensive coordinator Bobby Slowik is cut from the Kyle Shanahan and Gary Kubiak coaching tree, and we’ve seen some of the robust layering present in the route trees of his primary pass-catchers already this season. The biggest problem in instilling a zone-gap run-blocking scheme has been health up front, as Houston played the first two weeks of the season missing three starters along their offensive line and is now set to start Week 3 with four missing starters. For all the struggles of this offensive line in the run game, they still rank ninth in the league in percentage of dropbacks without yielding a pressure. That will likely be put to the test against a Jacksonville defense averaging the sixth-highest pressure rate through two weeks (29.3 percent). That pressure rate has translated to a low defensive aDOT against, which ranks seventh at 6.3.

Week 2 marked the second consecutive week where lead back Dameon Pierce played just 45 percent of the team’s offensive snaps. Even with Mike Boone out of the lineup in Week 2, Dare Ogbunbowale stepped into 16 offensive snaps and Devin Singletary saw his role grow into 36 percent of the offensive snaps. Until this team can get healthy up front, I don’t see a scenario where the ground game is able to get going. The Texans are averaging just 24.5 rush attempts per game through two weeks, and that’s with a combined (and absurd) 160 total offensive plays run from scrimmage (76 in Week 1 and 84 (!!!) in Week 2 – the NFL average is just over 65 per game). It also doesn’t help that the Jaguars have allowed only 11 explosive plays through two weeks in games against the Colts and Chiefs. We should have very little interest in this run game until the offensive line returns to health and we start to see some of the zone-gap run-blocking principles we were promised.

As was mentioned above, Houston’s offensive line has largely held up well in protection thus far, but now faces perhaps their toughest test against the athletic pass rush of the Jaguars. C.J. Stroud’s time to throw ranks 10th slowest of qualified passers through two weeks but his intended air yards per pass attempt resides at a healthy 8.0 – 13th deepest in the league. Slowik has also been able to design an offense with layered route concepts, leading to two pass-catchers ranked in the top 10 in the league in average separation at target through two weeks (Nico Collins and Tank Dell – sorry, Robert Woods… sad face emoji). Another aspect of the offense that could help rationalize the plus pass protection but horrendous run-blocking metrics of this offensive line is the hefty 35 percent 12-personnel utilization through two weeks (30 percent in Week 1 and 39 percent in Week 2). Nico Collins has been in a route only 81.8 percent of Houston’s pass plays on just a 66.3 percent snap rate, but his 30.6 percent targets per route run rate ranks 16th in the league through two weeks. Through 160 offensive plays, the top three wide receivers of Collins, Dell, and Robert Woods have combined for only 25 slot snaps, further highlighting an emphasis on 2-wide alignments and the presence of tight end Dalton Schultz out of the slot (fourth-highest slot snap rate amongst tight ends this season). That said, Schultz currently has an aDOT of 1.5 (lolz). 

How Jacksonville Will Try To Win ::

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